Gestational Breast Cancer - a Review of Outcomes, Pathophysiology, and Model Systems

Callaway, Mackenzie K, Dos Santos, Camila O (July 2023) Gestational Breast Cancer - a Review of Outcomes, Pathophysiology, and Model Systems. Journal of Mammary Gland Biology and Neoplasia, 28 (1). p. 16. ISSN 1083-3021

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DOI: 10.1007/s10911-023-09546-w


The onset of pregnancy marks the start of offspring development, and represents the key physiological event that induces re-organization and specialization of breast tissue. Such drastic tissue remodeling has also been linked to epithelial cell transformation and the establishment of breast cancer (BC). While patient outcomes for BC overall continue to improve across subtypes, prognosis remains dismal for patients with gestational breast cancer (GBC) and post-partum breast cancer (PPBC), as pregnancy and lactation pose additional complications and barriers to several gold standard clinical approaches. Moreover, delayed diagnosis and treatment, coupled with the aggressive time-scale in which GBC metastasizes, inevitably contributes to the higher incidence of disease recurrence and patient mortality. Therefore, there is an urgent and evident need to better understand the factors contributing to the establishment and spreading of BC during pregnancy. In this review, we provide a literature-based overview of the diagnostics and treatments available to patients with BC more broadly, and highlight the treatment deficit patients face due to gestational status. Further, we review the current understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms driving GBC, and discuss recent advances in model systems that may support the identification of targetable approaches to block BC development and dissemination during pregnancy. Our goal is to provide an updated perspective on GBC, and to inform critical areas needing further exploration to improve disease outcome.

Item Type: Paper
Subjects: diseases & disorders > cancer
diseases & disorders
diseases & disorders > neoplasms
diseases & disorders > cancer > cancer types > breast cancer
diseases & disorders > pregnancy
diseases & disorders > cancer > prognosis
Publication Type
Publication Type > review
diseases & disorders > cancer > cancer types
CSHL Authors:
Communities: CSHL labs > Dos Santos lab
CSHL Cancer Center Program
CSHL Cancer Center Program > Cancer Genetics and Genomics Program
SWORD Depositor: CSHL Elements
Depositing User: CSHL Elements
Date: 14 July 2023
Date Deposited: 21 Sep 2023 19:11
Last Modified: 30 Apr 2024 13:12
PMCID: PMC10348943
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