Breast Cancer Article Analysis

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Breast cancer remains the most common type of cancer diagnosed in women in the United States. It is the second most common cancer death with lung cancer being the first. African American women have a higher incidence of dying from the disease than any other race or ethnical group. For many years, it was thought that this was due to African American women not having access to the same health benefits as those of other races and that it was often found at a more advanced state. Though there are many factors that contribute to this, one of the newest factors recently studied is the effect of the genetic makeup of the tumor and their gene expression pattern, more specifically, protein expression of the estrogen (ER) and progesterone
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The lack of protein expressions in this breast cancer subtype is otherwise known as triple negative tumor (TNT). There is a higher likelihood of younger women, in particular younger African-American women with this subtype of breast cancer. This suggests “varying gene-environment etiologies with respect to age and race/ethnicity and a need for effective therapies” (Lund …show more content…
This article focused on the lack of standardization of the pathology tissue as well as stage, grade, poverty index, and treatment factors and compensated for these. These factors could certainly explain racial differences in survival among the breast cancer subtypes. What is currently known is African-American women have a lower lifetime risk of breast cancer but their mortality rates are significantly higher when compared to white American women. It is also known that the age at which they are diagnosed differ, African-American women are more likely to be diagnosed under that age of forty-five in comparison with Caucasian women. Additionally African-American women’s tumors are much more likely to be negative for the estrogen receptor, the progesterone receptor, and/or the HER2/neu marker (Amirikia 2011). I certainly agree that we must continue to study the genetic makeup of these tumors especially the TNT in African American women so that we can decrease the mortality in this group. It is apparent that we must develop effective targeted therapies for this to happen but screening mammography is extremely important in the younger African American women population to improve the early detection

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