ORIGINAL ARTICLE: The Effect of High Gravidity on the Carcinogenesis of Mammary Gland in TA2 Mice


Baocun Sun, Department of Pathology, Tianjin Cancer Institute and Hospital, Ti Yuan Bei, Huan Hu Xi Road, He Xi District, Tianjin 300060, China.
E-mail: BaocunSun@gmail.com


Citation Wang X, Huang C, Sun B, Gu Y, Cui Y, Zhao X, Li Y, Zhang S. The effect of high gravidity on the carcinogenesis of mammary gland in TA2 mice. Am J Reprod Immunol 2010


Spontaneous breast cancer in Tientsin Albinao 2 (TA2) mice, like human pregnancy-associated breast cancer (PABC), often occurs in pregnancy and puerperium, especially in mice with high gravidity. We hypothesized that the dysfunction of cellular immunity caused by the increase of 17β-estradiol (E2) and progesterone (P) might be one of the reasons for carcinogenesis of mammary gland.

Method of study

We investigated the T lymphocyte subsets and the concentration of serum hormone and cytokines in cancer-bearing, pregnant or postpartum TA2 mice using flow cytometry, chemiluminescent immunoassay, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), respectively.


The number of T lymphocytes and the concentration of E2, P, interleukin-2 (IL-2), IL-4, and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) changed with the increase of pregnancy and puerperium. During four pregnancies, elevated E2 and P resulted in a decrease in the number of CD3+, CD4+ T lymphocytes, CD4+/CD8+ ratio, and the concentration of IL-2, IL-4, and IFN-γ. Data in the fourth pregnancy were the closest to those of cancer-bearing mice.


T lymphocyte subsets and concentration of IL-2, IL-4, and IFN-γ are affected by E2 and P during multiple pregnancy and delivery to some degree, which may contribute to the genesis of spontaneous breast cancer in TA2 mice.