News | Women's Health | October 13, 2015

New NIH Breast Cancer Research to Focus on Prevention

Inquiries will focus on prevention for minorities and women, as well as role of breast density as intermediate risk factor

NIH, BCERP, breast cancer research, prevention, NIEHS, National Cancer Institute

October 13, 2015 — A new phase of the Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program (BCERP), focused on prevention, is being launched at the National Institutes of Health. Grant-funded researchers will now work across scientific disciplines, involve new racially and ethnically diverse communities, and expand the study of risk factors that precede breast cancer, such as breast density.

These new directions reflect recommendations made by the Interagency Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Coordinating Committee (IBCERCC) in 2013. IBCERCC was congressionally mandated to review the state of the science around breast cancer and environmental influences by the Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Act. Recommendations included prioritizing prevention, involving transdisciplinary research teams, engaging public stakeholders, collaborating across federal agencies and communicating the science to the public.

This broadened research focus will add to the growing knowledge of environmental and genetic factors that may influence breast cancer risk across the lifespan. The six new BCERP projects, plus a new coordinating center promoting cross-project collaboration, are jointly funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and the National Cancer Institute. All projects involve strong partnerships between researchers and organizations focused on breast cancer prevention or environmental health.

The new research will be conducted at the following institutions:

  • Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston;
  • City of Hope/Beckman Research Institute, Duarte, California;
  • Columbia University, New York City;
  • Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, Washington, D.C.;
  • Michigan State University, Lansing;
  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst; and
  • University of Wisconsin – Madison (Coordinating Center)

“The beauty of this research is that scientific discoveries and community observations inform each other, in order to dive deeper into the complex causes of breast cancer,” said Gwen Collman, Ph.D., director of NIEHS Division of Extramural Research and Training.

The focus on minority and socio-economically disadvantaged women is an important step in addressing disparities in breast cancer outcomes. Although African-American women are diagnosed with breast cancer less often than white women, more aggressive cancers and breast cancer deaths are more common among African-American women.

Another new direction for BCERP is research on the role of breast density as a possible intermediate risk factor for breast cancer. Dense breast tissue is one of the most common risk factors for breast cancer. Identifying links between environmental exposures and high breast density may provide new insights into prevention.

“These priorities reflect our continued commitment to breast cancer prevention,” noted Caroline Dilworth, Ph.D., BCERP program lead at NIEHS. “Our goal is to build on the high quality science we’ve been funding for more than a decade, while also being responsive to the expert recommendations of the IBCERCC report.”

For more information: www.nih.gov

Related Content

MRI Plus Mammography Improves Detection of New Breast Cancer After Surgery
News | Breast Imaging | June 22, 2017
A new article published by JAMA Oncology compares outcomes for combined mammography and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI...
Combined Optical and Molecular Imaging Could Guide Breast-Conserving Surgery

WLE specimen from a patient with a grade 3, ER-/HER2-, no special type (NST) carcinoma. (A) Cerenkov image; (B) Grey-scale photographic image overlaid with Cerenkov signal. An increased signal from the tumor is visible (white arrows); mean radiance is 871 ± 131 photons/s/cm2/sr, mean TBR is 3.22. Both surgeons measured the posterior margin (outlined in blue) as 2 mm (small arrow); a cavity shaving would have been performed if the image had been available intraoperatively. The medial margin (outlined in green) measured >5 mm by both surgeons. Pathology ink prevented assessing the lateral margin; a phosphorescent signal is visible (open arrows). (C) Specimen radiography image. The absence of one surgical clip to mark the anterior margin, and the odd position of the superior margin clip (white arrow) prevented reliable margin assessment. (D) Combined histopathology image from two adjacent pathology slides on which the posterior margin (bottom of image) and part of the primary tumor are visible (open arrows). The distance from the posterior margin measured 3 mm microscopically (double arrow). The medial margin is > 5 mm (not present in image). Credit: A. D. Purushotham, M.D., King’s College London, UK

News | Nuclear Imaging | June 20, 2017
June 20, 2017 — Breast-conserving surgery (BCS) is the primary treatment for early-stage...
ABS Clinical Director Alexandra Valencia, M.D.,  and consultant radiographer Gillian Clark using Insignia.

ABS Clinical Director Alexandra Valencia, M.D.,  and consultant radiographer Gillian Clark using Insignia.

News | Breast Imaging | June 12, 2017
ABS, one of the largest breast departments in the country, first signed with Insignia in 2010, and have confirmed a...
mammogram

Photo courtesy of Barco

News | Mammography | June 08, 2017
An analysis of breast cancer data revealed that many small breast cancers have an excellent prognosis because they are...
OCM images

These are sample OCM images (first row) and corresponding histology images (second row) of human breast tissue. The ground truth labels for the tissue type of these images are: (a) carcinoma, (b) lobule, (c) stroma, (d) adipose. Image courtesy of Sunhua Wan, Hsiang-Chieh Lee, Xiaolei Huang, Ting Xu, Tao Xu, Xianxu Zeng, Zhan Zhang, Yuri Sheikine, James L. Connolly, James G. Fujimoto, Chao Zhou

News | Clinical Study | June 07, 2017
According to a recent study, one in four women with breast cancer who opt for a breast-saving lumpectomy will need a...
News | Mammography | June 07, 2017
Hologic, Inc. announced that the Genius 3D Mammography exam is now the only mammogram that is FDA-approved as superior...
Feature | Women's Health | June 06, 2017 | By David A. Strahle, M.D.
Editor’s note: In this article, David A. Strahle, M.D., candidly shares how and why he and his team became involved...
breast tomosynthesis
News | Breast Imaging | June 06, 2017
Researchers at two leading U.S. breast centers recently completed a study which explored whether women attending...
concurrent-read cancer detection solution for digital breast tomosynthesis
News | Women's Health | June 06, 2017
Carolina Breast Imaging Specialists of Greenville, North Carolina today announced it is the first U.S. site to begin...
RAD Women Launches Online Resource Center
News | Business | June 01, 2017
RAD Women (#RADxx), a networking group for the advancement of women in imaging informatics, recently announced a new...
Overlay Init