The influence of metabolic syndrome, body weight, and diabetes on triple negative breast cancer prognosis is complicated.
Metabolic syndrome and risk of triple negative breast cancer
Metabolic syndrome, which is characterized by obesity, high blood sugar levels, impaired glucose tolerance, high blood cholesterol and triglycerides, and high blood pressure, is associated with increased risk of triple negative breast cancer. However, when the symptoms of the syndrome were examined separately, high triglyceride, HDL cholesterol, and glucose levels, but not hypertension or high body mass index (BMI), were found to have significant independent associations with triple negative breast cancer in one study. Another study found that high cholesterol induced angiogenesis and accelerated mammary tumor growth in a mouse model of triple negative breast cancer.
BMI and triple negative breast cancer prognosis
Most studies have reported that higher BMI at diagnosis is not associated with higher breast cancer recurrence and mortality among women with estrogen receptor negative (ER-) or triple negative disease. One meta-analysis of data from previous studies concluded that there is no evidence that the association between obesity and breast cancer outcome differs by hormone receptor or menopausal status.
However, there is evidence that weight does influence prognosis for women with triple negative breast cancer in some circumstances. Having been overweight at age 18 has been found to be associated with increased risk of death among women who subsequently develop ER- breast cancer. A Chinese study reported that BMI ≥ 25 is associated with lower rates of pathological complete response response to Taxol chemotherapy in women with hormone receptor negative breast cancer. Severe obesity (defined as BMI > 35 kg/m2) appears to be linked with increased risk of late relapse (breast cancer recurrence five years or more after diagnosis). A 2015 study reported that survival was reduced among very obese (BMI ≥ 40) women with triple negative disease, but not among women who were overweight or less obese.
Use of metformin, which has been shown to reduce triple negative breast cancer angiogenesis, growth and metastasis, is associated with reduced breast cancer mortality.
Use of beta blockers (which are used to treat hypertension, abnormal heart rhythms, and heart failure) is associated with improved relapse-free survival in patients with triple negative breast cancer.
In fact, there is some evidence that beta blocker use during chemotherapy could enhance its effectiveness, especially against triple negative disease. One study found that the beta blocker propranolol (Inderal) had strongest synergistic effects when combined with Taxol in an animal model of triple negative breast cancer.
Below under Selected breast cancer studies are links to studies concerning the influence of BMI, metabolic syndrome and diabetes on triple negative breast cancer prognosis.
Food for Breast Cancer triple negative breast cancer articles
Below are links to all of the other articles concerning triple negative breast cancer.
To see all of the articles, news stories and studies concerning triple negative breast cancer, click on the tripleNegative tag in the list of tags directly below.