Potential Therapeutic Targets and Molecular Drivers of Inflammatory Breast Cancer

September 24, 2013
Komal L. Jhaveri, MD

Komal L. Jhaveri, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, NYU Langone Medical Center, discusses the background and results of a study looking at crucial molecular drivers and potential therapeutic targets of inflammatory breast cancer (IBC).

Komal L. Jhaveri, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, NYU Langone Medical Center, discusses the background and results of a study looking at crucial molecular drivers and potential therapeutic targets of inflammatory breast cancer (IBC).

The goal of this analysis was to satisfy an unmet need and understand what molecular pathways are relevant in IBC. The laboratory at the NYU Langone Medical Center has done important work with the PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway and is aware of its relevancy in many disease types, including breast cancer.

IBCs express a lot of tumor-activated macrophages, Jhaveri says, which leads to the activation of certain signaling molecules, such as cytokines, which leads to the activation of the JAK/STAT signaling pathway.

This research team set out to understand and flesh out what was already known about the PI3K/AKT and JAK/STAT pathways as well as determine what pathways are important and activated in IBC.

Clinical Pearls

The study found that in IBC, Jhaveri says, the PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway was activated. Additionally, of the patients with an mTOR pathway activation, a very high proportion also had JAK/STAT pathway activation as well as the IL-6 and CD163 activations.

  • The goal of this study was to understand what molecular pathways are relevant in IBC
  • IBCs seem to express a lot of tumor-activated macrophages, which leads to the activation of cytokines and the JAK/STAT signaling pathway
  • A high proportion of the patients with an mTOR pathway activation also had JAK/STAT, IL-6, and CD163 activations