For an informative article on the truth behind well known breast cancer awareness and fund-raising campaigns see:
The Facade of Breast Cancer Awareness, Susan G. Komen and the Pink Ribbon
Young Breast Cancer Survivor Shares Her Story – Video
Three Stories of Breast Cancer Survivors – Video
How Carla Healed Stage 4 Breast Cancer in 1 Year *Survivor – Chris Beat Cancer Video
This nurse refused oncology for breast cancer in 2008! *Survivor – Chris Beat Cancer – Video
Jessica Bowen: Stage 3 Breast Cancer Survivor – Video
Breast Cancer Stories
What’s new in breast cancer research?
Bacteria link could lead to new breast cancer treatments
Researchers from Western University in Ontario, Canada, discovered in 2014 that a variety of bacteria were detected in breast tissue regardless of the location samples — tissue from close to the nipple to as far back as the chest wall.
The scientists discovered that in the women with breast cancer, there were significantly higher levels of Enterobacteriaceae, Staphylococcus, and Bacillus bacteria.
The participants without breast cancer, on the other hand, had higher incidences of Lactococcus and Streptococcus bacteria, which are thought to have strong anticarcinogenic properties.
In October 2016 issue of Scientific American, Knvul Sheikh wrote an article titled “The Breast Has Its Own Microbiome — and the Mix of Bacteria Could Prevent or Encourage Cancer.” The article surmises if certain bacteria do instigate cancer, the finding could lead to new screening methods or treatments.
Gregor Reid, a professor of microbiology and immunology at Western University and the study’s senior author, said the results “suggest that microbes in the breast, even in low amounts, may be playing a role in breast cancer — increasing the risk in some cases and decreasing the risk in other cases.”
The motivation for the research was the knowledge that breast cancer decreases with breastfeeding, Reid said in a news release from the American Society for Microbiology. “Since human milk contains beneficial bacteria, we wondered if they might be playing a role in lowering the risk of cancer.
“Or, could other bacterial types influence cancer formation in the mammary gland in women who had never lactated? To even explore the question, we needed first to show that bacteria are indeed present in breast tissue.
“In any case, something keeps bacteria in check on and in the breasts, as it does throughout the rest of the body,” Reid says. “What if that something was other bacteria — in conjunction with the host immune system? We haven’t answered this question, but it behooves experts in the field to now consider the potential.”
• Complete Story
Potential treatment for metaplastic breast cancer?
Metaplastic breast cancer is a rare type of breast cancer accounting for less than 1 percent of breast cancers. It’s invasive cancer, which means it has the potential to spread to surrounding breast tissue and to other parts of the body.
In this type of breast cancer, the cancer cells transform from one cancer cell type into another. Metaplastic breast cancers usually are divided into two main groups — purely epithelial and mixed epithelial.
In a study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, a multi-institutional team led by Dr. Jenny C. Chang, director of the Houston Methodist Cancer Center, identified a gene driving the formation of metaplastic breast cancer.  The researchers now have advanced a potential treatment for metaplastic breast cancer — the most aggressive subtype of triple-negative breast cancer.
“The results showed elimination of the cancer in nearly all of the mice when combined with standard chemotherapy,” says Chang, also a professor of medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine. “Our goal is to turn metaplastic breast cancer from a debilitating disease into a chronic illness.”
Triple negative is the name given to breast cancer that is:
The symptoms of metaplastic breast cancer are similar to those of invasive ductal breast cancer. These can include a change in the size of the breast, a lump or thickening of the skin, breast pain, changes in the nipple and puckering or dimpling of the skin.
The research team found the same gene mutated in 39 of the 40 tumor samples from metaplastic breast patients. The mutation was in the gene RPL39, which like HER2 (a gene overexpressed in 1 out of 5 breast cancers), is considered an oncogene. This means that cells carrying the erroneous form of this gene divide uncontrollably and result in rapid tumor growth. Identifying RPL39 was the first step in determining how to treat this cancer.
RPL39 regulates the expression of an enzyme called inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). The Houston Methodist researchers found that patients with high expression of RPL39 and iNOS had lower overall survival. Intuitively, the team investigated effects of an iNOS inhibitor in the treatment of metaplastic breast cancer and found the L-NMMA compound shrunk tumors in mice bearing human metaplastic breast tumors.
“We not only uncovered the biological pathway stimulating cancer growth, but we found a compound that blocked it, increasing the survival of mice carrying human metaplastic breast tumors,” Chang says.
Breast cancer myths
Dr. Véronique Desaulniers believes there are several myths about breast cancer that need addressing.
Myth: Hormones drive ER and PR positive cancers
“The big myth, and this is one of the myths that I like to bust when it comes to breast cancer, is that if you have an ER positive, or PR positive cancer, it’s your hormones that are driving that cancer,” she says. “Well, if our hormones cause cancer, every 20-year-old on the planet would have cancer. So it’s not our hormones but it’s the chemical hormones that work those two, or the things that stimulate hormones in the body, like aluminum and the antiperspirant. Aluminum is classified as a Metalloestrogen. The amalgams in your teeth, the Mercury… Mercury is classified as a Metalloestrogen, it stimulates and mimics estrogen in the body.
Myth: Plant estrogens cause cancer
“There was a study done in the University of Toronto several years ago where women were getting ready to have surgery lumpectomies, or mastectomies. And 30 days prior to the surgery they gave them muffins with five teaspoons of ground flax seeds in them. After 30 days, there was a reduced tumor growth markers from 30 percent to 71 percent.
“Just 30 days on flaxseed. So that’s very, very powerful and traditional oncologists will say, ‘Oh stay away from these foods, or stay away from soy.’ We know that non-GMO, fermented soy, has a place in our diet. It’s very beneficial and it turns on a lot of tumor suppressor genes and increases the good estrogens. And it does a lot of very powerful things.”
Myth: The BRCA gene is a death sentence
If you have the BRCA gene, it is not a death sentence, according to Dr. V.
“Angelina Jolie really created that Hollywood hype about she was BRCA gene positive, and so she cut off her breasts and she had a hysterectomy,” Dr. V says. “But what women don’t realize is that BRCA genes are good genes. They’re tumor suppressor genes that repair DNA damage. But less than 5 percent of them are mutated, but if they are mutated they can actually be reversed. It’s not a death sentence and less than 2 percent of women who have a strong family history of the BRCA gene actually have a serious problem with cancer.
“The rest is all Hollywood hype and there’s no reason to run to have your breasts cut off because we know that we can change the effect of our genes, right? Our genes have little switches on them. We know that our DNA is not our destiny. So what we eat and what we think and how we feel is going to either turn on cancer protective genes or turn off the cancer protective genes.”
Myth: Toxic chemicals can prevent cancer
“So, medical doctors, traditional doctors will recommend five to 10 years of hormone suppressing drugs, like tamoxifen for example,” Dr. V says. “Well, what they don’t tell you is that tamoxifen is classified as a human carcinogen by the American Cancer Society and the World Health Organization. So does it make sense to take this poison to stop the production of hormones, which you need your hormones for heart health, for immune health, for brain health, for bone health?
“If you stop the production of your hormones, even if you’re in menopause, you’re setting yourself up for some serious side effects. And these drugs cause secondary cancers which I’ve seen in women quite often, unfortunately. So, toxic drugs don’t prevent cancer.”
Myth: You can eat whatever you want
Dr. V has a problem with the myth that diet doesn’t have an impact on cancer risk or cancer healing.
“And then the idea of, ‘Oh, you can eat whatever you want,’ ” she said. “You hear oncologists say, ‘A diet does not increase your breast cancer risk. Just eat whatever and put on some weight. That’s all you’re concerned about.’ But we know that sugar feeds cancer, right?
“So, obviously staying away from sugar and including better foods that will help to prevent and break down the estrogen. So like cruciferous vegetables, and their sprouts, and matcha tea, and healthy oils, curcumin, medicinal mushrooms, all those things.”
Myth: Clean eating
According to Dr. Sunil Pai, eating ’clean’ in the United States is largely a widely propagated myth.
“Now, traditionally when people ate more sustainable agriculture, like grass-fed finished beef, wild-caught beef, for example fish, it does have some antioxidants,” he explains. “But now, due to factory farming — which is 97 percent of what the standard American eats — only 3 percent of food in America is grass-fed. So everybody is [saying], ‘Oh, I’m eating clean’ and there’s this whole Paleo-clean food movement. That’s a lie.
“That’s not 97 percent of America. Now, a lot of people think they’re eating clean, they’re not. So if they’re eating beef and it’s grass-fed, it needs to be grass-fed finished. Because now grass-fed means they feed it for three months and then they feed them corn [and] the rest. They charge them a super premium [price] thinking that it’s grass-fed, but this is corn-fed beef, right?
“What happens is the cows eat grass … why? Because the grass is all the nutrients the cow needs to survive. So where does the cow get its nutrition? It’s from plants. So hippopotamuses, horses, cows, giraffes, and elephants, and all these big animals what do they survive on? Why do they eat plants? Even the reindeer in the arctic, they just live on lichen. So, where do they get their protein from? Plants — plants have all the proteins.
“That’s one thing that people need to understand,” Pai says. “We all grew up like ‘beef, it’s what’s for dinner’, ‘pork, the other white meat.’ And the perfect protein is the egg. Most people know [these phrases] since childhood. It’s been ingrained in us. ‘It does the body good.’ We know that what they are and what that food group is. But then the strangest thing is there’s no study showing that [milk] does the body good.
“In fact, for example, milk does not increase bone density. Milk actually decreases bone density. All the studies show that. That was just a common catch phrase in the marketing. But milk does not do the body good.”
Modified radical mastectomy.
Removal of the entire breast, including the nipple, the areola, the overlying skin, and the lining over the chest muscles. In addition, some of the lymph nodes under the arm, also called the axillary lymph nodes, may be removed. The bean-shaped lymph nodes under the arm drain the lymphatic vessels from the upper arms, the majority of the breast, the neck, and the underarm regions. Often, breast cancer spreads to these lymph nodes, thereby entering the lymphatic system and allowing the cancer to spread to other parts of the body. In some cases, part of the chest wall muscle is also removed.
Removal of the entire breast, including the nipple, the areola, the overlying skin, the lymph nodes under the arm, and the chest muscles. For many years, this was the standard operation. However, today a radical mastectomy is rarely performed and is generally only recommended when the breast cancer has spread to the chest muscles.
Some newer mastectomy procedures may offer additional options for surgery. However, further studies are needed to learn whether these procedures are as effective as more standard types of surgery in completely removing or preventing the return of breast cancer:
In this procedure the breast tissue, nipple and areola are removed, but most of the skin over the breast is saved. This type of surgery appears to be similar to modified radical mastectomy in effectiveness for many women. It is used only when breast reconstruction is performed immediately after the mastectomy and may not be suitable for tumors that are large or near the skin surface.
This is similar to the skin-sparing mastectomy, and it is sometimes referred to as a “total skin-sparing mastectomy.” All of the breast tissue, including the ducts going all the way up to the nipple and areola, are removed, but the skin of the nipple and areola is preserved. The tissues under and around the nipple and areola are carefully cut away and examined by a pathologist. If no breast cancer cells are found close to the nipple and areola, they can be preserved. Otherwise, nipple-sparing mastectomy is not recommended.
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