Stress signaling and the shaping of the mammary tissue in development and cancer

A. Avivar-Valderas, H. C. Wen, J. A. Aguirre-Ghiso

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


The postnatal mammary gland develops extensively through cycles of proliferation, branching, involution and remodeling. We review recent advances made in the field of stress signaling pathways and its roles in mammary gland organogenesis, how they contribute to normal organ specification and homeostasis and how its subversion by oncogenes leads to cancer. We analyze stress signaling in mammary gland biology taking into account the interrelationship with the extracellular matrix and adhesion signaling during morphogenesis. By integrating the information gathered from in vivo and three dimensional in vitro organogenesis studies, we review the novel contribution of p38 SAPK, c-Jun NH 2 -terminal kinase and PKR-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK) signaling pathways to the timely activation of cell death, correct establishment of polarity and growth arrest and autophagy, respectively. We also review the evidence supporting that the activation of the aforementioned stress kinases maintain breast acinar structures as part of a tumor suppressive program and that its deregulation is commonplace during breast cancer initiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5483-5490
Number of pages8
Issue number48
StatePublished - Nov 27 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • ECM
  • anoikis
  • autophagy
  • breast cancer
  • mammary gland
  • stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Stress signaling and the shaping of the mammary tissue in development and cancer'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this