UM doctor working on new breast cancer treatment
When a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, medical protocols have comprised one, two or all three of the following components: surgery (lumpectomy or mastectomy); chemotherapy; radiation.
Dr. Tan Ince, an associate professor of pathology and researcher at the Interdisciplinary Stem Cell Institute at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, is hard at work to change that — which could give women another treatment option: personalized multi-hormone combinations.
When hormone therapy is included in current breast cancer treatment protocols, only estrogen is involved. According to Ince, around 75 percent of breast cancer patients have an estrogen-positive form of the disease — and thus are prescribed medication to lower their estrogen in order to decrease likelihood of recurrence.
“We’ve looked at the role two additional hormones — Vitamin D and androgen — play in the development of breast cancer,” Ince says.
The findings could eventually prove transformative — but let’s backtrack for a moment.