You’re listening to Project Oncology on ReachMD, sponsored by Lilly. On this episode, we’ll hear from Dr. Banu Arun, Professor of Breast Medical Oncology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and Executive Director of Cancer Genetics for the MD Anderson Cancer Networks. Dr. Arun shares thoughts on her presentation from the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, titled, “Fine Tuning Risk Assessment and Risk Reduction.” Let’s hear from her now.
Breast Cancer risk assessment is very important. There are multiple risk factors that can contribute to the risk of breast cancer, and in the clinical setting, it is a little bit difficult to sort through the risk factors and give them a priority. So during this session, we wanted to dig a little bit deeper into some of the risk factors as well as implications for screening and chemo prevention. The topics will relate to lifestyle, exercise, and diet. We will review the data that can help personalize risk assessment and also recommendations for patients. The second topic will relate to emergent, pharmacologic interventions for chemo prevention. As you know, tamoxifen, raloxifene, the selective estrogen receptor modulators, and aromatase inhibitors are currently used for the risk reduction of breast cancer, as they mainly reduce the risk of estrogen receptor positive breast cancer, and we really don’t have any agents that can reduce ER negative, or triple negative breast cancer. So we will be going over some of the data and agents that look promising for triple negative or ER negative breast cancer prevention. And finally, breast density is one of the known risk factors for breast cancer development, and recently there have been improvements in technologies artificial intelligence that can be incorporated, acting very soon in the clinical setting, to quantify better densities, and include, perhaps, some other risk factors as well, and give the best personalized risk assessment to the patient.
The speakers will be trying to convey their take-home messages during the sessions. The initial talk will relate to exercise and diet. As you know, there’s a lot of data out there, and it’s sometimes difficult to sort through and make sense of the data in terms of what we can recommend to our patients. So, the speakers will be focusing on larger introspective trials that can help providers to discuss it in the clinical setting with their patients.
In terms of chemo prevention, as I have mentioned, we have effective agents in reducing risk of estrogen receptor positive breast cancers, but there is lack of agents that can reduce the risk of estrogen receptor negative and triple negative breast cancer. The audience will be able to hear about promising newer pharmacological interventions that hopefully can reduce the incidence of those cancers as well. And finally, traditionally we are looking at breast density as a risk predictor, but with recent improvements in AI technology, it is possible to combine this technology with standard, risk criteria. And again, the whole idea is to personalize the risk assessment for the patient and come up with a personalized approach.
That was Dr. Banu Arun from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. This has been an episode of Project Oncology, sponsored by Lilly. To access other episodes from this series, visit reachmd.com/ProjectOncology, where you can Be Part of the Knowledge. Thanks for listening!