As if breast cancer wasn't devasting enough, a new study has found that the cells affected by breast cancer can destroy a key immune system response within the body, esentially allowing the disease to spread to additional parts of the body.


"We have identified a way that breast cancer cells can turn off the immune system, allowing them to spread to distant parts such as the bone," said Belinda Parker, the lead research of the study and a research fellow at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, Australia.


By identifying the way that the immune response is "turned off," the researchers hope to develop new treatments that would restore immune system function and help prevent the spread of cancer. 


The study was published today in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Medicine.


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