Latest Research on Breast Cancer

Executive Summary

Several research studies are conducted to seek more information on breast cancer, their prevention method, diagnostic approach at the initial phase, and the best treatments strategies. Surgeons develop and improve the imaging tools to determine the tumor’s position better. Liquid biopsies involves the Circulating cancer cells (CTCs) that reveals a high level of CTC could predict a worse outcome than women with a lower level in case of metastatic breast cancer (stage 4). New genetic changes are investigated as cancer has become specific treatments like aromatase inhibitors. The breast cancer recurrence with early-stage breast cancer is determined. New imaging tests such as Scintimammography (molecular breast imaging), Positron emission mammography (PEM), Electrical impedance imaging (EIT), Elastography, and optical imaging tests are developed.

Advances in Breast Cancer

About Latest Research on Breast Cancer the Researchers worldwide are working to find better ways to prevent, detect, and treat breast cancer and improve the quality of life of patients and survivors.

Liquid biopsies

Circulating Tumor Cells and Circulating Tumor DNA  

Circulating cancer cells (CTCs) are cancer cells that break away from the tumor and enter the bloodstream. Circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) is the DNA released into the bloodstream when cancer cells die. According to the Latest Research on Breast Cancer Researchers are looking at tests that measure the amount of CTC and cDNA in the blood of women with breast cancer ​1​. The identification and testing of CTCs and cDNA in the blood are sometimes referred to as a “liquid biopsy”. This type of biopsy can offer a simpler and cheaper way to test for cancer than a traditional needle biopsy, which risks bleeding and infection.

According to studies on women with metastatic breast cancer (stage 4), a high level of CTC could predict a worse outcome than women with a lower level. 

Although more studies are required before liquid biopsies can replace traditional needle biopsy, some potential uses include: 

  1. Investigating new genetic changes (mutations) in cancer cells that could mean cancer has become resistant to specific treatments (such as aromatase inhibitors) 
  2. Determine if a particular drug will work on a tumor before trying it 
  3. Help decide whether a woman’s cancer responds to a given treatment by noticing a drop in CTC level.
  4. Predict whether breast cancer will recur (come back) in women with early-stage breast cancer.

Also Read: Breast cancer side effects after treatment

New imaging tests

New types of breast imaging tests are in development. Some are still being used in certain situations, while others are still under study ​2,3​. It will take some time to check if they are good or better than those used today. Some of these tests include:

  • Scintimammography (molecular breast imaging)
  • Positron emission mammography (PEM)
  • Electrical impedance imaging (EIT)
  • Elastography
  • New types of optical imaging test


  1. 1.
    Hall C, Valad L, Lucci A. Circulating Tumor Cells in Breast Cancer Patients. Crit Rev Oncog. 2016;21(1-2):125-139. doi:10.1615/CritRevOncog.2016016120
  2. 2.
    Akram M, Iqbal M, Daniyal M, Khan A. Awareness and current knowledge of breast cancer. Biol Res. 2017;50(1):33. doi:10.1186/s40659-017-0140-9
  3. 3.
    Tong C, Wu M, Cho W, To K. Recent Advances in the Treatment of Breast Cancer. Front Oncol. 2018;8:227. doi:10.3389/fonc.2018.00227