Cancers, Vol. 13, Pages 3918: The Role of Chronic Inflammation in the Development of Breast Cancer
Cancers doi: 10.3390/cancers13153918
David N. Danforth
Chronic inflammation contributes to the malignant transformation of several malignancies and is an important component of breast cancer. The role of chronic inflammation in the initiation and development of breast cancer from normal breast tissue, however, is unclear and needs to be clarified. A review of the literature was conducted to define the chronic inflammatory processes in normal breast tissue at risk for breast cancer and in breast cancer, including the role of lymphocyte and macrophage infiltrates, chronic active adipocytes and fibroblasts, and processes that may promote chronic inflammation including the microbiome and factors related to genomic abnormalities and cellular injury. The findings indicate that in healthy normal breast tissue there is systemic evidence to suggest inflammatory changes are present and associated with breast cancer risk, and adipocytes and crown-like structures in normal breast tissue may be associated with chronic inflammatory changes. The microbiome, genomic abnormalities, and cellular changes are present in healthy normal breast tissue, with the potential to elicit inflammatory changes, while infiltrating lymphocytes are uncommon in these tissues. Chronic inflammatory changes occur prominently in breast cancer tissues, with important contributions from tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes and tumor-associated macrophages, cancer-associated adipocytes and crown-like structures, and cancer-associated fibroblasts, while the microbiome and DNA damage may serve to promote inflammatory events. Together, these findings suggest that chronic inflammation may play a role in influencing the initiation, development and conduct of breast cancer, although several chronic inflammatory processes in breast tissue may occur later in breast carcinogenesis.
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