How diet and lifestyle may increase or reduce the risk of secondary breast cancer developing to provide sound, evidence-based advice relevant to a UK population
By applying the latest analytical technologies to clinical samples taken from breast cancer patients ABC Discover has been created to improve rates of early detection and improve our understanding of the impact of diet and lifestyle on breast cancer recurrence and secondary spread and aims to provide the basis for precision medicine in breast cancer.
ABC Discover will be led by Dr Paul Skipp who together with his team, plan to perform deep ‘molecular phenotyping’ of the clinical samples.
This research promises to have a major impact on the discovery of biomarkers, which are required for the development of new tools to identify risk and early detection of Stage IV breast cancer. ABC Discover will also continue to advance our understanding of the impact of diet and lifestyle on recurrence and secondary spread, the main cause of breast cancer related deaths
Working closely with the Centre for Cancer Immunology, ABC Discover is a flagship research programme under the umbrella of the newly established Integrative Molecular Phenotyping Centre (IMPC) at the University of Southampton.
By measuring the amounts of a range of molecule types including, genes, proteins and small molecules and utilising cutting edge data analysis techniques, ABC Discover will profile the clinical samples to develop ‘molecular handprints’. These intricate and highly detailed ‘maps’ will advance our understanding of why some breast cancers become metastatic and the impact diet and lifestyle has on patient progression and outcome.
Using large-scale integration of genomic, proteomic and metabolomic data together with physiological, epidemiological, and environmental data, we hope to better understand breast cancer and pave the way toward enabling more personalised and effective healthcare treatment and diagnosis.
By identifying risk biomarkers and factors such as diet and lifestyle which are associated with recurrence, ABC Discover hopes to revolutionize treatment intervention to improve patient outcome. Advancing the effectiveness of predicting risk, diagnosing and monitoring responses and understanding cancer behaviour in response to diet and lifestyle, ABC Discover aims to provide the basis for precision medicine in breast cancer.
Q&A, discussing prevention and the ABC Discover project
As part of our regular Research Q&A series, Sports Ambassador, Dr Karen met with Dr Paul Skipp, project leader on the ABC Discover project to learn more about his 5-year research project to better understand how diet and lifestyle affects disease progression and metastasis;
Diet & Lifestyle study
Working with researchers at the University of Westminster, our DietCompLyf study enrolled over 3,300 breast cancer patients from 56 centres across the UK, each participating from one year post-diagnosis and on active follow-up for 5 years following diagnosis.
The annual blood and urine samples and questionnaire data comprise the largest collection of its kind in the UK. This resource allows the study of dietary, lifestyle and biological differences between UK patients who develop secondary spread and those who do not.
Researchers at the University of Westminster have identified patient trends in consumption of foods between age groups, and observed that weight gain is associated with higher risk of disease but that chemotherapy can contribute to weight gain, which is important to relate to patients so that they can modify their behaviour. Researchers are currently completing work that assesses the relationship between eating foods containing molecules that mimic human oestrogen, and recurrence or spread of breast cancer.
Our DietCompLyf Study is supported by the National Cancer Research Network. Patient samples have also been shared with the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC), a forum of international investigators who are combining information from many studies to identify gene mutations that give rise to a family history of breast cancer.
The DietCompLyf study has confirmed that certain activities help reduce the risk of developing secondary breast cancer, including; a healthy diet constituting at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day, regular exercise, a better quality of life with reduced stress and loneliness, moderate alcohol intake, not smoking and maintaining a healthy weight.
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Genetic Predisposition to In Situ and Invasive Lobular Carcinoma of the Breast Elinor Sawyer et al. PLoS Genet. 2014 April; 10(4): e1004285
The DietCompLyf study: a prospective cohort study of breast cancer survival and phytoestrogen consumption. Swann R, Perkins KA, Velentzis LS, Ciria C, Dutton SJ, Mulligan AA, Woodside JV, Cantwell MM, Leathem AJ, Robertson CE, Dwek MV. Maturitas. 2013 Jul;75(3):232-40.
19p13.1 is a triple negative-specific breast cancer susceptibility locus Stevens KN, Fredericksen Z, Vachon CM, et al. Cancer Res (2012); 72(7)1795-1803
Genome-wide association analysis identifies three new breast cancer susceptibility loci Ghoussaini M, Fletcher O, Michailidou K, et al. Nature Genetics (2012); 44(3)312-318
Significant changes in dietary intake and supplement use after breast cancer diagnosis in a UK multicentre study. Velentzis LS, Keshtgar MR, Woodside JV, Leathem AJ, Titcomb A, Perkins KA, Mazurowska M, Anderson V, Wardell K, Cantwell MM. Breast Cancer Res Treat 2011 Jul;128(2):473-82
Lignans and breast cancer risk in pre- and post-menopausal women: meta-analyses of observational studies Velentzis LS, Cantwell MM, Cardwell C, Keshtgar MR, Leathem AJ, Woodside JV. Br J Cancer 2009 May 5;100(9):1492-8