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Risk to Malignancy and Immune Collagen Status/Deconstructing how Stromal-epithelial Interactions Modulate Breast Cancer Treatment Response

Developmental Research Project:
Risk to Malignancy and Immune Collagen Status/Deconstructing how Stromal-epithelial Interactions Modulate Breast Cancer Treatment Response

Principal InvestigatorsValerie Weaver, Shelley Hwang and Lisa Coussens

Abstract:
Development of tools to identify patients with elevated risk of malignancy, and of biomarkers that predict progression and treatment response are urgently needed. This study is exploring the importance of the tissue stroma in breast cancer initiation and progression. The study examines the relationship between the immune infiltrate and biophysical properties of breast collagen, and their risk of malignancy and progression. Data generated through this initiative is expected to provide the framework for a larger multi disciplinary clinically-focused proposal. The study will demonstrate feasibility, team interactions, and “proof of concept” that breast cancer risk and progression can be linked to a specific immune infiltrate and a characteristic collagen signature.