The protective effect of longer duration of breastfeeding against pregnancy-associated triple negative breast cancer.
Oncotarget. 2016 May 29. Epub 2016 Aug 29. PMID: 27248476
Wael M ElShamy
Parity associated breast cancer (PABC) often diagnosed within the 2-5 years after a full term pregnancy. PABC is usually present with more advanced, poorly differentiated, high-grade cancers that show shorter time to progression and often of the triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) subtype. Data from around the world show that pregnancy-associated TNBC is independently associated with poor survival, underscoring the impact of the pregnant breast microenvironment on the biology and consequently the prognosis of these tumors. Although it is not yet clear, a link between pregnancy-associated TNBCs and lack or shorter duration of breastfeeding (not pregnancy per se) has been proposed. Here, we present epidemiological and experimental evidence for the protective effect of longer duration of lactation against pregnancy-associated TNBCs, and propose a putative molecular mechanism for this protective effect and its effect in eliminating any potential TNBC precursors from the breast by the end of the natural breast involution.