New study offers insight into the development of human triple negative breast cancers

Nov. 29, 2022
Understanding of the cellular mechanisms leading to the development of these cancers is essential to identifying new therapeutic options.

In a new study, researchers from Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine demonstrated that proper control of a cellular pathway known as the Hippo pathway prevents the development of triple negative breast cancer.

In an experimental model, the researchers conditionally deleted the Lats1 and Lats2 genes, two components of the Hippo pathway, in the luminal epithelium of the mammary glands. When these genes were deleted, the models rapidly develop basal-like mammary carcinomas resembling human basal-like breast cancers. They found that the development of these carcinomas depended on the activity of the Hippo pathway effector proteins YAP and TAZ, and that deletion of these two proteins reversed carcinoma development in their model.

According to the researchers, the gene-expression signature identified from Lats1/2-deleted tumors could be used to identify aggressive features associated with triple negative breast cancers.

These findings appear online in the journal Nature Communications.

Boston University release