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Unique estrogen receptor linked to metastatic breast cancer

velopment of metastasis.

Results showed that while the two types of receptors, GPR30 and the standard ERs, were commonly found together - their expression was not interdependent. This was best evidenced by the fact that approximately half of the ER-negative tumors remained positive for GPR30.

"This suggests that tumors traditionally viewed as being unreceptive to estrogen, may in fact, remain estrogen responsive," says co-author Edmond Sabo, MD, pathologist at Rhode Island Hospital and assistant professor at Brown Medical School. "If this is the case, it could significantly influence which patients are candidates for hormone therapy."

Researchers also found that GPR30 was positively associated with tumor size, and that primary tumors from patients with metastatic disease were twice as likely to express GPR30.

Alternatively, an inverse relationship was measured between the standard estrogen receptors (ER and ER) and tumor size, and no significant association was found between receptor expression and the presence of metastatic disease.

"Our data indicates that GPR30 promotes tumor growth and is linked to metastatic disease, but also evidences GPR30's autonomy from the standard estrogen receptors," says Filardo. " It strengthens the concept that GPR30 and standard estrogen receptors promote distinct biological responses and invokes a new paradigm regarding our current understanding of breast cancer biology."

Interestingly, although GPR30 was strongly associated with the development of metastatic disease, there was not a connection between the presence of GPR30 and if breast cancer cells had invaded the lymph nodes of a patient.

"Further research is needed to determine if there is a relationship between GPR30 and lymph node invasion," says Filardo. "Given that tumor size and lymph node invasion are well-known predictors of metastases, future studies will focus on determining how cells that test positive for GPR30 spread throughout the
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Contact: Megan Martin
mmartin@lifespan.org
401-793-7484
Lifespan
1-Nov-2006


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