Subpopulation of fibroblasts drives breast tumor development

Cancer-associated fibroblasts are especially prominent in breast tumors, but the nature of their function and origin not been uncertain completely. Consequently, recruitment of BM-derived CAFs to primary tumors and metastases resulted in a gradual reduction in PDGFR alpha levels, which was apparently also in human breast tumors, and correlated with worse outcome. The finding that PDGFR alpha expression determines two functionally unique CAF populations may have implications for patient diagnosis and tailored therapeutics in breast cancer. “Our study shows that the recruitment of bone marrow-derived fibroblasts is important for promoting tumor growth, likely by enhancing blood vessel formation,” said senior author Dr. Neta Erez, professor of pathology at Tel Aviv University. “Understanding the function of these cancer-associated fibroblasts could form the basis of developing novel therapeutic manipulations that co-target bone marrow-derived fibroblasts as well as the cancer cells themselves”. Original Link: