In breast cancer, the best defense is a strong offense

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After pregnancy, Camillados Santos Lab, an associate professor at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, discovered that breast cells call special immune cells called natural killer T (NKT) cells to prevent the development of tumors. This image shows post-pregnant mouse breast epithelial cells (red and magenta). The cells call NKT cells (green, indicated by white arrows) to kill epithelial cells that can become cancerous. Credits: Hanassoge Somasundara / dos Santos lab / CSHL, 2021

Your immune system is constantly patroling your body to keep you healthy. Occasionally, immune cells take action to address potential problems. After pregnancy, the lab of Associate Professor Camillados Santos of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) discovered that breast cells evoke an immune system enhancement called natural killer T (NKT) cells, preventing the development of tumors. This finding reveals new ways pregnancy can reduce the risk of breast cancer.

In Immune system, There are two lines of defense. The first is the innate immune response, which attacks foreign molecules encountered by immune cells. The second is the adaptive response, which is composed of immune cells that specifically respond to requests for help from specific molecules. NKT cells are a unique population of cells that are present throughout the body and can be involved in both responses. Amritha Varshini Hanasoge Somasundara, a CSHL graduate student,pregnancy:

“There is this particular increase [NKT] Cell type, and only in the mammary gland. NKT cells are found everywhere else in the body, but they do not spread anywhere else in the body. “

The team wanted to know what a large number of NKT cells were doing in breast tissue.Hanasoji has a breast in mice Epithelial cellsIt produces a specific protein called CD1d after pregnancy that lines the breastfeeding tube. If the cells did not present CD1d, the researchers did not observe an increase in NKT cells in the tissue. Epithelial cells became cancerous and grew into tumors. Hanasoge and dos Santos believe that the CD1d molecule calls NKT cells to monitor epithelial cells in the breast tissue after pregnancy. When they become cancerous, NKT cells can quickly kill them to prevent tumor growth.

The team’s findings establish a new link between pregnancy and the immune system in breast cancer prevention. The dos Santos Lab wants to know how these findings are transformed into humans, and what other factors can affect the abundance of NKT cells. Breast tissue, Aging and menopause, both are associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. Dos Santos says:

“One of the hypotheses we are currently working on is whether pregnancy in the second half of life results in the same expansion of the same subtype. Immune cells As a pregnancy that happened early in life? ”

The team published their findings on December 7, 2021 Cell report..


Catalog breast cells to find the origin of cancer


For more information:
Camila O. dos Santos, parity-induced changes to breast epithelial cells, control NKT cell proliferation and breast carcinogenesis. Cell report (2021). DOI: 10.1016 / j.celrep.2021.110099.. www.cell.com/cell-reports/full… 2211-1247 (21) 01593-X

Quote: For breast cancer, the best defense is a powerful attack taken on December 7, 2021 from https: //medicalxpress.com/news/2021-12-breast-cancer-defense-strong-offense.html ( December 7, 2021).

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