Blood platelets: the detectives of breast cancer

One of the investigations, funded by donations generated by the Mamapop show, concludes that the tumour uses the genetic machinery of platelets to spread through the bloodstream and become more active

Thanks to funding from the Mamapop show, the research team made up of professionals from the Arnau de Vilanova University Hospital (HUAV) and the Institute for Research in Biomedicine of Lleida (IRBLleida) has established a new method to determine the prognosis and evolution of breast cancer. This "more reliable and simple" method uses a blood test to measure platelets and thus know the prognosis at each stage of breast cancer and be able to apply the best treatment options.

Serafín Morales, the researcher and doctor at the Arnau de Vilanova University Hospital in Lleida who is leading the project, explained how the whole process leaves a mark, a type of trace, which allows the tumour load to be monitored and the route the cancer will take if it develops metastasis to be determined. This method is currently being carried out on 150 breast cancer patients in different scenarios and subtypes.

"It is a continuing project, but some of the results have already been applied to our patients to benefit them," Morales explained.

The relevance of the discovery also lies in the fact that the genomic map of platelets is much easier to isolate than not having to do so through the study of blood where many other substances are mixed in. By detecting and tracking the symbiosis that the tumour makes with the platelet, it is possible to assess with greater precision information about the real situation of the cancer from the beginning of the diagnosis and to predict where it will proliferate.

The study is one of the studies that GREBIC researchers at IRBLleida have been carrying out thanks to the funding that the Mamapop initiative has been providing for the last seven years. This year, the 8th edition of the concert-show, dedicated to the best musicals, will once again be the musical and solidarity Christmas adventure in the three sessions that will be staged at the Llotja Theatre in Lleida. The creator and director of Mamapop, Manel Simon, explained that the two sessions on Saturday 23 December are already sold out, and there are only a few tickets left for the one on Sunday 24 at 5pm.

The press conference was also attended by the director of IRBLleida, Diego Arango, who accompanied Simon and Morales.

Mamapop helps fund various breast cancer research projects