Pregnancy Reduces the Risk of Breast Cancer: Notion Reinforced

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NKT cells are a type of unique immune cells that participate in both basic types of immunity responses – innate response (attack any foreign molecule when encountered) and adaptive response (immune response on calls).

Link between Pregnancy and Brest Cancer

In post-pregnancy, “there is an increase in this specific [NKT] cell type, and only in the mammary gland. We don’t see the expansion everywhere else in the body, even though NKT cells are present everywhere else in the body,” says CSHL graduate student Amritha Varshini Hanasoge Somasundara.

Further to validate the results, the team found that in mice after pregnancy, the breast epithelial cells (which line lactation ducts) produce a specific protein called CD1d, without which there was no increase in NKT cells.

Moreover, absence of NKT cells led to the cancerous formation of the epithelial cells. Hence, the team affirmed that CD1d molecules were responsible for inviting in the NKT cells for further monitoring the epithelial cells in the breast tissue for tumors after pregnancy.

The team is now further set to explore the results in humans.

Source: Medindia



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