Estrogen/EGF receptor interactions in breast cancer: rationale for new therapeutic combination strategies

Biomed Pharmacother. 2003 Dec;57(10):447-51. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2003.09.006.


In the therapy of estrogen receptor (ER) positive human mammary carcinomas, the treatment with the antiestrogen tamoxifen has been well established. However, the development of hormone resistance is an important factor in breast cancer progression against endocrine therapy. The presence of the receptor for EGF (EGFR) correlates with lack of response towards antiestrogen therapy. The EGFR is not only involved in tumor cell growth, survival signaling, cell migration, metastasis formation and angiogenesis, but also seems to confer reduced responses of tumor cells towards anti-hormones. Concomitant inhibition of both, the receptors for estrogen and EGF may be necessary to improve breast cancer therapy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Breast Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm / physiology
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • ErbB Receptors / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • ErbB Receptors / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms, Hormone-Dependent / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasms, Hormone-Dependent / metabolism
  • Receptor Cross-Talk
  • Receptors, Estrogen / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Receptors, Estrogen / physiology


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Receptors, Estrogen
  • ErbB Receptors