Progesterone metabolites, often considered waste products by endocrinologists, may be potent hormones that can fight against hormone-negative breast cancer, according to a new study published in Breast Cancer Research.
A research team at Western Ontario University team discovered that the progesterone metabolites 5α-dihydroprogesterone (5αP) and 3α-dihydroprogesterone (3αHP), respectively, exhibit pro-cancer and anti-cancer effects on receptor-negative human breast cells.
“We’ve found that they are potent hormones that can play a vital role in the fight against breast cancer,” said lead author and biology professor John P. Wiebe. He will share the findings at the Endocrine (ENDO) Society Annual Meeting and Expo in San Francisco in June.
“Our findings provide unequivocal evidence that 5αP and 3αHP deserve to be considered as active hormones in their own right, rather than inactive waste products, and that they need to be considered in the development of new approaches to prevention, detection and treatment of breast cancers,” Wiebe said.
The study may also lead to an understanding of the cause and potential regulation of receptor-negative breast cancers.
• Read more about TNBC in my book, Surviving Triple-Negative Breast Cancer.