Overcoming Endocrine Resistance in Breast Cancer

Cancer Cell. 2020 Apr 13;37(4):496-513. doi: 10.1016/j.ccell.2020.03.009.


Estrogen receptor-positive (ER+) breast cancer is the most common breast cancer subtype. Treatment of ER+ breast cancer comprises interventions that suppress estrogen production and/or target the ER directly (overall labeled as endocrine therapy). While endocrine therapy has considerably reduced recurrence and mortality from breast cancer, de novo and acquired resistance to this treatment remains a major challenge. An increasing number of mechanisms of endocrine resistance have been reported, including somatic alterations, epigenetic changes, and changes in the tumor microenvironment. Here, we review recent advances in delineating mechanisms of resistance to endocrine therapies and potential strategies to overcome such resistance.

Keywords: ESR1; SERD; SERM; aromatase inhibitor; breast cancer; endocrine resistance; estrogen receptor.

Publication types

  • Review