Estrogenic compounds can induce cell proliferation and cell death. This is important in the development and treatment of (breast) cancer.
Estrogen can bind to two different estrogen receptors (ER). Binding to ERα stimulates cell proliferation. Binding to ERβ counteracts effects of ERα. In this research the T47D-ERβ breast cancer cell model was used in which ERα/ERβ ratios present in different tissues can be mimicked. Especially the ERα/ERβ ratio in the cell and receptor preference of estrogenic compounds determine whether cell proliferation or cell death is stimulated.
Effects of breast cancer drug tamoxifenThe importance of coregulators and effects of breast cancer drug tamoxifen, which in the body is converted to the more active form 4-hydroxytamoxifen, were also investigated.
In the T47D-ERβ model 4-hydroxytamoxifen can stimulate cell proliferation or apoptosis; 4-hydroxytamoxifen counteracts ERα if (cancer) cells contain relatively much ERα and little ERβ. This could be used to investigate how (cancer) cells will react to the drug.