Title

Melatonin and breast cancer: Cellular mechanisms, clinical studies and future perspectives

DOI

10.1017/S1462399409000982

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

12-1-2009

Publication Title

Expert Reviews in Molecular Medicine

Volume

11

ISSN

14623994

Abstract

Recent studies have suggested that the pineal hormone melatonin may protect against breast cancer, and the mechanisms underlying its actions are becoming clearer. Melatonin works through receptors and distinct second messenger pathways to reduce cellular proliferation and to induce cellular differentiation. In addition, independently of receptors melatonin can modulate oestrogen-dependent pathways and reduce free-radical formation, thus preventing mutation and cellular toxicity. The fact that melatonin works through a myriad of signalling cascades that are protective to cells makes this hormone a good candidate for use in the clinic for the prevention and/or treatment of cancer. This review summarises cellular mechanisms governing the action of melatonin and then considers the potential use of melatonin in breast cancer prevention and treatment, with an emphasis on improving clinical outcomes. © Cambridge University Press 2009.

Open Access

Green Accepted

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