Cholesterol “fuels” breast cancer
Cholesterol may cause breast cancer cells to grow and spread, according to new research.
Researchers from Duke University Medical Center studied the correlation between a cholesterol by-product, called 27HC, and tumors in mice. They found that the mice whose diets were high fat had higher levels of the cholesterol by-product than mice whose diets were low fat.
The findings also showed that the mice with higher levels of the cholesterol by-product developed tumors that were 30 percent larger than in the mice with lower levels of the cholesterol by-product.
The results, published in the journal Science, provide an explanation for previous studies that have shown there to be a connection between obesity and breast cancer. Researchers found that the cholesterol by-productmimics the hormone estrogen and may cause breast cancer to spread and grow. These findings provide more evidence that lowering cholesterol may help reduce the risk of breast cancer.