Personalised prevention in breast cancer


The work

As part of a European Commission (EC) funded research project, Breast Cancer Stratification (B-CAST), PHG Foundation is leading work on examining the potential for developing personalised prevention for breast cancer within national health systems.

The project aims to build a fuller picture of the factors that influence risk and impact on disease prognosis. It will use this knowledge to improve tools available to clinicians to estimate risk and disease prognosis. This should allow better targeting of prevention and treatment strategies. 

Why it matters

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer with around 1.7 million people worldwide diagnosed with the disease in 2012. In the UK each year around 50,000 women and around 350 men are diagnosed with breast cancer. Survival rates are generally good, but better outcomes can be achieved with earlier detection of the disease.

There are many subtypes of breast cancer each of which may be associated with different risk factors which may work independently or in combination to influence the development and prognosis of the disease. A better understanding of the influence of different risk factors on specific subtypes of cancer can help clinicians target treatments and prevention strategies to deliver improved health outcomes for patients.

Thinking about novel technologies in breast cancer prevention

How could novel technologies transform prevention pathways in the next 20 years? These four perspectives consider the areas of

What PHG Foundation are doing

Taking a life course approach - from preconception to post menopause - we are mapping the current international policy landscape in relation to breast cancer prevention. We will then:

  • Investigate the actual and potential extent of personalised prevention activities
  • Examine the extent to which personalised prevention is included within the discourse of public health and policy makers
  • Carry out an analysis of factors that will influence implementation of personalised breast cancer prevention, including the impact of emerging technologies
  • Develop a strategy for public health professionals and policy makers to support optimal integration of personalised prevention of breast cancer in health promotion and disease prevention programmes

We will be publishing blogs, briefings and short reports, including three country specific case studies - one each for the UK, the Netherlands and Australia - throughout the project and delivering our final report to the European Commission by September 2020.

For more information about our work on personalised prevention in breast cancer contact Dr Sowmiya Moorthie

This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 633784

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