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Gut flora influences the risk of metastasis in breast cancer – healing practice



How the gut affects breast cancer

An unhealthy and inflammatory gut microbiota triggers changes in normal breast tissue that we spread of breast cancer favor other parts of the body.

In a new study involving experts from University of Virginia it has been investigated whether cellular changes in normal breast tissue, which occur as a reaction to a pathological disruption of colonization of the intestine (dysbiosis of the intestinal flora), cause a spread of Hormone receptor positive (HR+) breast tumor cells support financially. The results were published in the journal “Cancer immunology research“published.

What is the gut microbiome?

This Gut microbiome (gut flora) refers to all the microbes present in the intestine. The researchers explain that its composition can be disturbed, for example, by poor diet, the use of antibiotics, obesity or other factors.

In the present study, it has now been investigated whether such a disorder influences the Immune cells in healthy breast tissue (called mast cells) and how this one promote the spread of cancer box.

mast cells describe blood cells that help regulate the body’s immune response to disease and allergens and are considered the body’s defense cells.

Spread of cancer in mice by accumulation of mast cells

The team was able to show that an unhealthy microbiome Accumulation of mast cells in the breast cause. The gut microbiome consistently influenced mast cell behavior and function in the presence of tumors.

These changes continued after tumors formed in a mouse model of hormone receptor-positive breast cancer, transforming breast tissue into a single ideal starting point for the spread of cancer to other parts of the body, the team said.

Mast cells increase collagen in breast tissue

In addition, according to the researchers, it has been shown that mast cells collagen in breast tissue mouse rose and a previous spread of cancer favored.

However, by blocking the process that led to the accumulation of mast cells, it was also possible to prevent the negative effects associated with the The spread of the tumor in the lungs was significantly reduced.

The results also seem to apply to humans

Based on the lab results, the experts also examined tissue samples from human patients hormone receptor positive breast cancer. They found that these participants increased mast cell count and increased collagen deposition exposed, just as was the case in mice.

In addition, the number of mast cells was correlated with the amount of collagen and, above all, with the patient’s risk of developing a recurrence of breast cancerreport the researchers.

Mast cells play a controversial role in breast cancer, with some studies finding a positive correlation with treatment outcomes while others have identified negative associations‘ said the author of the study doctor R. Rutkowski in a Press release .

Our investigation suggests that to better define the relationship between mast cells and the risk of breast tumor metastasis, we should consider the functional properties of mast cells, the collagen density of the tissue, and the location of mast cells relative to the tumor.‘ adds the expert.

We were able to show that gut dysbiosis, an unhealthy and inflammatory gut microbiome, systematically alters breast tissue in mice that do not have cancer. Tissue changes increase mast cell infiltration, which in the presence of tumor facilitates breast tumor metastasis“, like that Dr Rutkowski.

Mast cells recruited to the tissue environment during dysbiosis rearrange tissue architecture such that tumor cells metastasize to other organs‘ explains the doctor.

Metastases could be avoided

The results suggest that in medical treatments, the relationship between gut flora and mast cells in women with breast cancer deliberately influenced could be to prevent The cancer comes back and spreadsexplain the researchers.

Additionally, the findings could help identify womenor this Risk of cancer recurrence persists so that their treatment can be adapted to avoid the formation of metastases.

Personalized medicine in oncology is a promising approach to achieve better patient outcomes‘” adds the author of the study Doctor Tzu Yu Feng.

Our research on the gut-mast cell axis has identified possible intervention points that could be used for a tailored therapeutic approach. The ultimate goal would be to improve the chances of survival for patients diagnosed with breast cancer“, to sum up feng. (as)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the requirements of the specialized medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been verified by health professionals.


  • Tzu-Yu Feng, Francesca N Azar, Sally A Dreger, Claire Buchta Rosean, Mitchell T McGinty, et al. : Reciprocal interactions between the gut microbiome and breast tissue mast cells promote metastatic dissemination of HR+ breast tumors; in: Cancer Immunology Research (published , Cancer immunology research
  • University of Virginia Health System: UVA Health Discovery: Unhealthy Gut Helps Spread Breast Cancer (published 09/22/2022), University of Virginia Health System

Important note:
This article contains general advice only and should not be used for self-diagnosis or treatment. It cannot substitute a visit to the doctor.

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