Using galectin-7 as a breast cancer differentiation marker would provide help in Inhibiting Metastatic Breast Cancer, these finding came in a new study done by Dr. Yves St-Pierre at INRS-Institut Armand-Frappier, Québec, Canada. Their data reported in The American Journal of Pathology. Breast cancer is considered to be the second-most common type of non-skin cancer and the fifth-most common deadly type of cancer world-wide. It is also 100-times more common in women than in men.
The protein galectin-7, which leads to cell death, is expressed in and plays a metastatic role in various types of cancer. Researchers investigated galectin-7 expression and function in breast cancer cells To determine the role of galectin-7 in breast cancer. Galectin-7 was highly expressed in two pre-clinical models of breast cancer, and high galectin-7 expression levels increased the metastatic potential of these tumor cells. In humans, high expression levels of galectin-7 were restricted to high-grade tumors and were associated with metastasis. Taken together, these data implicate galectin-7 as both a breast cancer differentiation marker and a potential therapeutic target for metastatic breast cancer. "Lower survival rates and increased metastases in mice injected with breast cancer cells over expressing galectin-7 are related to the ability of galectin-7 to protect from apoptosis, as previously shown in the case of galectin-3. … Further studies regarding the role of galectin-7 in resistance to apoptosis are currently under investigation." said Dr. St.-Pierre and colleagues.