High microRNA Expression Can Prevent Breast Cancer Metastasis

High microRNA Expression Can Prevent Breast Cancer Metastasis
shutterstock_149771528Cancer metastasis is the process by which tumors spread throughout the body, usually resulting in increased cancer aggressiveness and death. In 1995, Drs. Samuel Hellman and Ralph Weichselbaum, experts on cancer radiotherapy, proposed an intermediate state of cancer metastasis, and possibly a treatable state, between a localized and widespread tumor, which they called oligometastasis. The concept of oligometastasis has important implications for cancer treatment because patients with this type of tumor, i.e. with very few local secondary tumors, normally no more than 5, may be cured using localized cancer therapies such as high-dose radiotherapy or surgery. Dr. Weichselbaum and colleagues published their results in the journal Oncotarget, where they reveal the biological mechanisms involved in oligometastasis. In this study, they analyzed all the genetic information collected from tumor samples obtained in the clinical trials that they previously performed and published. The team identified small clusters of microRNAs expressed only by oligometastatic cells and demonstrated how certain microRNAs can bind to messenger RNA from specific genes and inhibit their expression. They found that the most important microRNAs were codified by a small chromosomal region known as 14q32, which is relevant for early embryonic developme
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