Breast cancer

An illustration of breast cancer
Breast cancer showing an inverted nipple, lump, and skin dimpling
Early signs of possible breast cancer
Tumor in the breast visualized by Breast-Computertomography (Breast-CT)
All types of alcoholic beverages, including beer, wine, or liquor, cause breast cancer.
Ducts and lobules, the main locations of breast cancers
Overview of signal transduction pathways involved in programmed cell death. Mutations leading to loss of this ability can lead to cancer formation.
Histopathologic types of breast cancer, with relative incidences and prognoses
A mobile breast cancer screening unit in New Zealand
Chest after right breast mastectomy
Internal radiotherapy for breast cancer
Breasts after double mastectomy followed by nipple-sparing reconstruction with implants
An extreme example of an advanced recurrent breast cancer with an ulcerating axillary mass
Breast cancer surgery in 18th century
Radical mastectomy, Halsted's surgical papers
The pink ribbon is a symbol to show support for breast cancer awareness.
MRI showing breast cancer
Excised human breast tissue, showing an irregular, dense, white stellate area of cancer 2cm in diameter, within yellow fatty tissue
High-grade invasive ductal carcinoma, with minimal tubule formation, marked pleomorphism, and prominent mitoses, 40x field
Micrograph showing a lymph node invaded by ductal breast carcinoma, with an extension of the tumor beyond the lymph node
Neuropilin-2 expression in normal breast and breast carcinoma tissue
F-18 FDG PET/CT: A breast cancer metastasis to the right scapula
Needle breast biopsy
Elastography shows stiff cancer tissue on ultrasound imaging.
Ultrasound image shows irregularly shaped mass of breast cancer.
Infiltrating (invasive) breast carcinoma
Mammograms showing a normal breast (left) and a breast with cancer (right)
Stage T1 breast cancer
Stage T2 breast cancer
Stage T3 breast cancer
Metastatic or stage 4 breast cancer
Stage 1A breast cancer
Stage 1B breast cancer
Stage 2A breast cancer
Stage 2A breast cancer
Stage 2B breast cancer
Stage 2B breast cancer
Stage 2B breast cancer
Stage 3A breast cancer
Stage 3A breast cancer
Stage 3A breast cancer
Stage 3B breast cancer
Stage 3B breast cancer
Stage 4 breast cancer

Cancer that develops from breast tissue.

- Breast cancer
An illustration of breast cancer

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Domain map of BRCA1; RING, serine containing domain (SCD), and BRCT domains are indicated. Horizontal black lines indicate protein-binding domains for the listed partners. Red circles mark phosphorylation sites.

BRCA1

Protein that in humans is encoded by the BRCA1 gene.

Protein that in humans is encoded by the BRCA1 gene.

Domain map of BRCA1; RING, serine containing domain (SCD), and BRCT domains are indicated. Horizontal black lines indicate protein-binding domains for the listed partners. Red circles mark phosphorylation sites.
Absolute risk of cancers in BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation.

If BRCA1 or BRCA2 itself is damaged by a BRCA mutation, damaged DNA is not repaired properly, and this increases the risk for breast cancer.

Mammography

Mammography

Process of using low-energy X-rays (usually around 30 kVp) to examine the human breast for diagnosis and screening.

Process of using low-energy X-rays (usually around 30 kVp) to examine the human breast for diagnosis and screening.

Mammography
Illustration of a mammogram
A mobile mammography unit in New Zealand
Normal (left) versus cancerous (right) mammography image

The goal of mammography is the early detection of breast cancer, typically through detection of characteristic masses or microcalcifications.

Nolvadex (tamoxifen) 20 mg tablets.

Tamoxifen

Nolvadex (tamoxifen) 20 mg tablets.
Crystallographic structure of afimoxifene (carbon = white, oxygen = red, nitrogen = blue) complexed with ligand binding domain of estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) (cyan ribbon).

Tamoxifen, sold under the brand name Nolvadex among others, is a selective estrogen receptor modulator used to prevent breast cancer in women and treat breast cancer in women and men.

A coronal CT scan showing a malignant mesothelioma
Legend: → tumor ←, ✱ central pleural effusion, 1 & 3 lungs, 2 spine, 4 ribs, 5 aorta, 6 spleen, 7 & 8 kidneys, 9 liver

Cancer

Group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body.

Group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body.

A coronal CT scan showing a malignant mesothelioma
Legend: → tumor ←, ✱ central pleural effusion, 1 & 3 lungs, 2 spine, 4 ribs, 5 aorta, 6 spleen, 7 & 8 kidneys, 9 liver
Symptoms of cancer metastasis depend on the location of the tumor.
The GHS Hazard pictogram for carcinogenic substances
Share of cancer deaths attributed to tobacco in 2016.
The incidence of lung cancer is highly correlated with smoking.
Cancers are caused by a series of mutations. Each mutation alters the behavior of the cell somewhat.
The central role of DNA damage and epigenetic defects in DNA repair genes in carcinogenesis
Chest X-ray showing lung cancer in the left lung
Three measures of global cancer mortality from 1990 to 2017
Engraving with two views of a Dutch woman who had a tumor removed from her neck in 1689
University of Florida Cancer Hospital
CancerTreeMammal
An invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast (pale area at the center) surrounded by spikes of whitish scar tissue and yellow fatty tissue
An invasive colorectal carcinoma (top center) in a colectomy specimen
A squamous-cell carcinoma (the whitish tumor) near the bronchi in a lung specimen
A large invasive ductal carcinoma in a mastectomy specimen

The benefits of screening for breast cancer are controversial.

Person following the removal of their right breast.

Mastectomy

Medical term for the surgical removal of one or both breasts, partially or completely.

Medical term for the surgical removal of one or both breasts, partially or completely.

Person following the removal of their right breast.
Transgender person with healed double lateral incision mastectomy
Examples of custom nipple prostheses
Breast prostheses used by some women after mastectomy
Mastectomy specimen containing a very large cancer of the breast (in this case, an invasive ductal carcinoma)
Typical macroscopic (gross examination) appearance of the cut surface of a mastectomy specimen containing cancer, in this case, an invasive ductal carcinoma of the breast, pale area at the center

A mastectomy is usually carried out to treat breast cancer.

crystal structure of a rad51-brca2 brc repeat complex

BRCA2

BRCA2 and BRCA2 are a human gene and its protein product, respectively.

BRCA2 and BRCA2 are a human gene and its protein product, respectively.

crystal structure of a rad51-brca2 brc repeat complex
Recombinational repair of DNA double-strand damage - some key steps. ATM (ATM) is a protein kinase that is recruited and activated by DNA double-strand breaks. DNA double-strand damages also activate the Fanconi anemia core complex (FANCA/B/C/E/F/G/L/M).  The FA core complex monoubiquitinates the downstream targets FANCD2 and FANCI.   ATM activates (phosphorylates) CHEK2 and FANCD2  CHEK2 phosphorylates BRCA1.   Ubiquinated FANCD2 complexes with BRCA1 and RAD51.  The PALB2 protein acts as a hub, bringing together BRCA1, BRCA2 and RAD51 at the site of a DNA double-strand break, and also binds to RAD51C, a member of the RAD51 paralog complex RAD51B-RAD51C-RAD51D-XRCC2 (BCDX2).  The BCDX2 complex is responsible for RAD51 recruitment or stabilization at damage sites.  RAD51 plays a major role in homologous recombinational repair of DNA during double strand break repair. In this process, an ATP dependent DNA strand exchange takes place in which a single strand invades base-paired strands of homologous DNA molecules.  RAD51 is involved in the search for homology and strand pairing stages of the process.
structure of a brca2-dss1 complex
Absolute risk of cancers in BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation.

If BRCA1 or BRCA2 itself is damaged by a BRCA mutation, damaged DNA is not repaired properly, and this increases the risk for breast cancer.

Jan Baptist van Helmont (left) and his son Franciscus-Mercurius from the Ortus medicinae (1648)

United States Preventive Services Task Force

Independent panel of experts in primary care and prevention that systematically reviews the evidence of effectiveness and develops recommendations for clinical preventive services".

Independent panel of experts in primary care and prevention that systematically reviews the evidence of effectiveness and develops recommendations for clinical preventive services".

Jan Baptist van Helmont (left) and his son Franciscus-Mercurius from the Ortus medicinae (1648)

Screening mammograms, or routine mammograms, are X-rays given to apparently healthy women with no symptoms or evidence of breast cancer in the hope of detecting the disease in an early, easily treatable stage.

A breast lump associated with an inverted nipple and skin dimpling. Underlying cause was breast cancer.

Breast mass

Localized swelling that feel different from the surrounding tissue.

Localized swelling that feel different from the surrounding tissue.

A breast lump associated with an inverted nipple and skin dimpling. Underlying cause was breast cancer.
A fine needle biopsy

Causes include fibrocystic change, fibroadenomas, breast infection, galactoceles, and breast cancer.

Radiation therapy of the pelvis, using a Varian Clinac iX linear accelerator. Lasers and a mould under the legs are used to determine exact position.

Radiation therapy

Therapy using ionizing radiation, generally provided as part of cancer treatment to control or kill malignant cells and normally delivered by a linear accelerator.

Therapy using ionizing radiation, generally provided as part of cancer treatment to control or kill malignant cells and normally delivered by a linear accelerator.

Radiation therapy of the pelvis, using a Varian Clinac iX linear accelerator. Lasers and a mould under the legs are used to determine exact position.
Radiation therapy for a patient with a diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, with radiation dose color-coded.
Histopathology of radiation cystitis, including atypical stromal cells (“radiation fibroblasts”).
The beam's eye view of the radiotherapy portal on the hand's surface with the lead shield cut-out placed in the machine's gantry
A teletherapy radiation capsule composed of the following:
Varian TrueBeam Linear Accelerator, used for delivering IMRT
A SAVI brachytherapy device
X-ray treatment of tuberculosis in 1910. Before the 1920s, the hazards of radiation were not understood, and it was used to treat a wide range of diseases.

For example, non-melanoma skin cancer, head and neck cancer, breast cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, cervical cancer, anal cancer, and prostate cancer.

Secular trend in decrease in age of menarche in Western European and North American girls
After: Boaz (1999)

Menarche

First menstrual cycle, or first menstrual bleeding, in female humans.

First menstrual cycle, or first menstrual bleeding, in female humans.

Secular trend in decrease in age of menarche in Western European and North American girls
After: Boaz (1999)
Sekihan, a traditional Japanese dish of sticky rice steamed with azuki beans, was sometimes served after menarche.

According to a review article, there may also be an association between early age at menarche and breast cancer risk.