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New ways to model human breast cancer in mice

  • Researcher: Professor Hallgeir Rui
  • Institution: Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, USA
  • Award Amount: £183,925 for 3 years from January 2014
  • Cancer Type: Breast Cancer
New ways to model human breast cancer in mice
The majority of newly diagnosed, aggressive breast cancers contain something called an oestrogen receptor on the surface of the breast cancer cells. This means that the presence of the female sex hormone, oestrogen, encourages the cells to grow. Many women can be successfully treated for their breast cancer but sadly it can come back, often elsewhere in the body, and this time is resistant to treatment. These tumours, known as secondary tumours or metastases, are typically the cause of death from cancer, not the original tumours. In order to study how this disease reoccurs and test treatments to kill these cancer cells, a new mouse model is vital. Professor Hallgeir Rui has been developing such an improved mouse model and is now using it to test new treatments for oestrogen receptor positive breast cancer cells which have spread to the lungs. Using mice to test new treatments is still a vital part of developing novel therapies and is a legal requirement for all new drugs licensed to give to patients.
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