Metabolic disorders such as obesity and prediabetes are known to be linked with a higher risk of breast cancer, though scientists have struggled to explain the correlation. Now, scientists at City of Hope believe they’ve uncovered an important insight about the relationship between obesity and breast cancer risk that could point to new prevention strategies and maybe even drug targets.
The City of Hope team established a link between the “clock gene” BMAL1 and tumor suppression. Specifically, prediabetic and obese mice that lacked the BMAL1 protein suffered from accelerated breast tumor growth and metastasis at a rate that was faster than what was seen in their lean counterparts, the researchers reported in the journal iScience.
BMAL1 is referred to as a clock gene because it is involved in maintaining the body’s circadian rhythms. The City of Hope team believes their discovery shows that a loss of the BMAL1 protein in obesity gives breast cancer a “competitive edge,” said senior author David Ann, Ph.D., chair of the graduate school of biological sciences at City of Hope, in a <a href="https://www.eu Read More