New Paradigm of Breast Cancer Causation and Prevention

Investigator: Robert Hiatt, MD, PhD
Sponsor: California Breast Cancer Research Program

Location(s): United States


This work takes a transdisciplinary approach to develop a model for breast cancer causation and etiology that takes into account multiple disciplinary perspectives from the biologic to the sociologic in order to provide common ground for understanding and to point up gaps in knowledge about breast cancer etiology that require further investigation.

Dr. Hiatt is studying potential environmental causes of breast cancer by focusing on adolescence and the development of the mammary gland in both human populations and mouse models.

Part of this work includes studying how neighborhoods are designed, how they appear “on the ground,” and the association (if any) with girls’ diet, physical activity, body mass index, and pubertal maturation. The current work includes adding data on grocery stores, produce vendors, restaurants, fast food outlets, other food establishments, and parks and recreational facilities to the characterization of the neighborhood and how these factors affect the risk of developing breast cancer.