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Tumor Growth is Stimulated by Muscarinic Receptor Agonism: Role of Autoantibodies in Breast Cancer Patients

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In developed countries, cancer has replaced infectious diseases as a major cause of death. Currently, efforts in the immunoprevention of cancer are beginning to resemble those presented by the prevention of infectious diseases by immunization a century ago. Breast cancer is the most frequent type of tumor in women and is the second leading cause of death by this illness, among them. Moreover, cancer incidence will grow during next years. Some findings in autoimmunity related to breast cancer in animal models have been important to clarify mechanisms that potentiate tumor growth. Clinical and experimental data now clearly indicate that chronic inflammation significantly contributes to cancer development. Emerging out of these studies is an appreciation that persistent humoral immune responses exacerbate recruitment and activation of innate immune cells in the neoplastic microenvironment where they regulate tissue remodeling, pro-angiogenic and pro-survival pathways that together potentiate cancer development. Generally, antigens involved in autoimmune response in breast cancer are modified self-proteins or over-expressed normal proteins that induce autoantibodies (autoAbs) formation, which exhibit tumor promoting actions. Very frequently muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChR) are up-regulated in different types of tumors appearing in different animal species. mAChR have the ability to act as autoantigens for tumor bearers. This article will review recent results concerning to the ability of mAChR expressed in transformed breast cells to trigger autoAbs formation either in experimental models or in breast cancer patients. We will also discuss the action of these antibodies as agonists of mAChR.
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Keywords: Autoantibodies; MCF-7 T1N0Mx breast tumors; autoantigens; cells proliferation; inositol monophosphate; muscarinic receptors; nitric oxide synthase; phospholipase Cβ2; protein kinase C; tumor progression

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 September 2012

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  • Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic Agents in Medicinal Chemistry aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments in the medicinal chemistry and rational drug design for the discovery of new Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic Agents. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of current topics in Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic medicinal chemistry.

    Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic Agents in Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments in Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic drug discovery.
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