Breast cancer: why metastasis spreads to the bone

3D image showing the invasion of breast cancer cells (green) expressing ZEB1 into mouse bone tissue (red).

When cancer cells break away from a primary tumor and migrate to other organs, this is called «metastatic cancer». The organs affected by these metastases, however, depend in part on their tissue of origin. In the case of breast cancer, they usually form in the bones. In an attempt to identify what determines the organs affected by metastasis, the group of Didier Picard from the Molecular and Cellular Biology Department, in collaboration with researchers from ETH Zurich, has identified a protein involved in this phenomenon. This discovery could lead to the development of therapeutic approaches to suppress metastasis.

This article was published in the journal Nature Communications on April 19, 2022.

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