Developmental therapeutics for inflammatory breast cancer: Biology and translational directions

Ricardo Costa _, Cesar A. Santa-Maria, Giovanna Rossi, Benedito A. Carneiro, Young Kwang Chae, William J. Gradishar, Francis J. Giles and Massimo Cristofanilli

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:12417-12432. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13778

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Ricardo Costa1, Cesar A. Santa-Maria1,2, Giovanna Rossi2, Benedito A. Carneiro1,2, Young Kwang Chae1,2, William J. Gradishar1,2, Francis J. Giles1,2, Massimo Cristofanilli1,2

1Developmental Therapeutics Program, Division of Hematology/Oncology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, United States of America

2Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University, Chicago, United States of America

Correspondence to:

Ricardo Costa, email: [email protected]

Keywords: inflammatory breast cancer, targeted therapy, immunotherapy

Received: September 26, 2016    Accepted: November 07, 2016    Published: December 02, 2016


Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is a rare and aggressive form of breast cancer, which accounts for approximately 3% of cases of breast malignancies. Diagnosis relies largely on its clinical presentation, and despite a characteristic phenotype, underlying molecular mechanisms are poorly understood. Unique clinical presentation indicates that IBC is a distinct clinical and biological entity when compared to non-IBC. Biological understanding of non-IBC has been extrapolated into IBC and targeted therapies for HER2 positive (HER2+) and hormonal receptor positive non-IBC led to improved patient outcomes in the recent years. This manuscript reviews recent discoveries related to the underlying biology of IBC, clinical progress to date and suggests rational approaches for investigational therapies.

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