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USC-led study suggests exercise reduces risk of developing invasive breast cancer

ating in strenuous activity, such as swimming, jogging, or participating in aerobics activities for more than five hours per week annually, when compared to the least active women. Similar results were seen for in situ breast cancer risk.

One unique finding in this study is that the benefit of long-term strenuous activity was only seen among invasive breast cancer patients with ER-negative tumors. Previous studies have suggested little to no difference in the effect of physical activity by hormone receptor status.

"This finding was somewhat unexpected; however, if it is repeated in future studies of physical activity and breast cancer risk, in offers a promising complement to our current approaches to preventing breast cancer, namely the use of drugs that block estrogens, like tamoxifen or raloxifene. These drugs seem to be effective in reducing risk of ER-positive cancers, but do not impact the occurrence of ER-negative cancers," says Bernstein.

"This study confirms that breast cancer risk is influenced by consistent participation in strenuous forms of exercise activity. However, it may require substantial commitment of time to achieve this lower risk," concludes Bernstein. "This study showed that risk was lower for women who exercised at least 5 hours per week and our prior studies of other groups of women have suggested a minimum of 3-4 hours per week."


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Contact: Jennifer Chan
chanj@usc.edu
323-442-3941
University of Southern California
26-Feb-2007


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