Breast Cancer: A Molecular and Redox Snapshot
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© Copyright 2016, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2016.Significance: Breast cancer is a unique disease characterized by heterogeneous cell populations causing roadblocks in therapeutic medicine, owing to its complex etiology and primeval understanding of the biology behind its genesis, progression, and sustenance. Globocan statistics indicate over 1.7 million new breast cancer diagnoses in 2012, accounting for 25% of all cancer morbidities. Recent Advances: Despite these dismal statistics, the introduction of molecular gene signature platforms, progressive therapeutic approaches in diagnosis, and management of breast cancer has led to more effective treatment strategies and control measures concurrent with an equally reassuring decline in the mortality rate. Critical Issues: However, an enormous body of research in this area is requisite as high mortality associated with metastatic and/or drug refractory tumors continues to present a therapeutic challenge. Despite advances in systemic chemotherapy, the median survival of patients harboring metastatic breast cancers continues to be below 2 years. Future Directions: Hence, a massive effort to scrutinize and evaluate chemotherapeutics on the basis of the molecular classification of these cancers is undertaken with the objective to devise more attractive and feasible approaches to treat breast cancers and improve patients' quality of life. This review aims to summarize the current understanding of the biology of breast cancer as well as challenges faced in combating breast cancer, with special emphasis on the current battery of treatment strategies. We will also try and gain perspective from recent encounters on novel findings responsible for the progression and metastatic transformation of breast cancer cells in an endeavor to develop more targeted treatment options.
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