Stress may switch on bone 'mets'

Stress stimulates the formation of blood vessels in bone and may help breast cancer cells to invade this organ.

In the July issue of the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, Florent Elefteriou, Ph.D., Julie A. Sterling, Ph.D., and colleagues describe a mechanism for skeletal colonization by that could lead to new ways to stop or prevent it.

In a mouse model, they show that mimicking an increase in sympathetic nerve activity triggers a skeletal neo-angiogenic switch dependent on increased levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), leading to increased bone blood vessel density and higher incidence of to the skeleton.

These results could explain the link between chronic stress and higher breast cancer recurrence, reduced survival and poor prognosis in women diagnosed with .

They may also contribute to the discovery of new strategies to improve treatment outcomes, especially for women subjected to chronic stress, the researchers concluded.

More information: Patrick L Mulcrone et al. Skeletal Colonization by Breast Cancer Cells Is Stimulated by an Osteoblast and β2AR-Dependent Neo-Angiogenic Switch, Journal of Bone and Mineral Research (2017). DOI: 10.1002/jbmr.3133

Citation: Stress may switch on bone 'mets' (2017, August 10) retrieved 28 May 2023 from
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Explore further

Stress fuels breast cancer metastasis to bone


Feedback to editors