Evaluating Differences in the Growth of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer on Different Genetic Backgrounds

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In: Student Reports, Summer 2019, The Jackson Laboratory


Breast Cancer remains the cancer type with the highest incidence rates and second highest death rates in the United States' women's population. The progression of this cancer type has been shown to occur differently amongst individuals and this variability has been attributed to factors, such as age. In this study, differences in genetic backgrounds were evaluated as a possible factor that enhances tumor growth dynamics variability. To do so, the bioluminescent triple-negative breast cancer line MDA-MB- 231/Luc was xenografted into immunodeficient mice from strains known to be from different genetic and genealogical backgrounds: C57BU6J, NOD/ShiLIJ, and Balb/cByJ. Tumor growth was measured by bi-weekly caliper measurements, imaging 24 hours after xenograft and prior to mouse euthanasia, and post-necropsy tumor weights. The results showed a positive correlation between the three types of measurements. Additionally, there were statistically significant differences in tumor growth speed amongst the different strains. These results supported three conclusions: the MDA-MD-231/Luc cancer line grows on each of the strains, the tumors grow at different speeds on individuals of each strain, and genetic background is, ultimately, a factor that enhances tumor growth dynamics' variability.

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