Invited Commentary linked to Natrajan R, Mackay A, Lambros MB, et al. A whole-genome massively parallel sequencing analysis of BRCA1 mutant oestrogen receptor-negative and -positive breast cancers. J Pathol 2012; 227: 29–41.
Article first published online: 8 MAY 2012
Copyright © 2012 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
The Journal of Pathology
Volume 227, Issue 3, pages 267–269, July 2012
How to Cite
Ginestier, C., Charafe-Jauffret, E. and Birnbaum, D. (2012), What drives breast cancer heterogeneity: oncogenic events or cell of origin?. J. Pathol., 227: 267–269. doi: 10.1002/path.4028
No conflicts of interest were declared.
- Issue published online: 6 JUN 2012
- Article first published online: 8 MAY 2012
- Accepted manuscript online: 20 MAR 2012 01:33AM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 9 MAR 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 8 MAR 2012
- Manuscript Received: 23 FEB 2012
- Breast cancer;
- cell of origin;
Breast cancer is known to show considerable inter-tumoural heterogeneity. It is widely accepted that combinations of oncogenic events have a major role in determining tumour phenotype. However, accumulating evidence suggests that the identity of the cell that acquires the first oncogenic event, the so-called cell of origin, may define the molecular subtype of the resulting tumour. Recent work published in the Journal of Pathology by Natrajan and colleagues questions the origin of breast cancer heterogeneity. After studying BRCA1 tumours, they suggest that genomic alterations are not sufficient to determine tumour behaviour. These and other recent observations underscore the importance of defining what is causing tumour heterogeneity, so that appropriate therapy can be given. Copyright © 2012 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.