Clinical & Experimental Metastasis

, Volume 31, Issue 5, pp 595–612

Genetics of breast cancer bone metastasis: a sequential multistep pattern


DOI: 10.1007/s10585-014-9642-9

Cite this article as:
Fazilaty, H. & Mehdipour, P. Clin Exp Metastasis (2014) 31: 595. doi:10.1007/s10585-014-9642-9


Bone metastasis accounts for the vast majority of breast cancer (BC) metastases, and is related to a high rate of morbidity and mortality. A number of seminal studies have uncovered gene expression signatures involved in BC development and bone metastasis; each of them points at a distinct step of the ‘invasion-metastasis cascade’. In this review, we provide most recently discovered functions of sets of genes that are selected from widely accepted gene signatures that are implicate in BC progression and bone metastasis. We propose a possible sequential pattern of gene expression that may lead a benign primary breast tumor to get aggressiveness and progress toward bone metastasis. A panel of genes which primarily deal with features like DNA replication, survival, proliferation, then, angiogenesis, migration, and invasion has been identified. TGF-β, FGF, NFκB, WNT, PI3K, and JAK-STAT signaling pathways, as the key pathways involved in breast cancer development and metastasis, are evidently regulated by several genes in all three signatures. Epithelial to mesenchymal transition that is also an important mechanism in cancer stem cell generation and metastasis is evidently regulated by these genes. This review provides a comprehensive insight regarding breast cancer bone metastasis that may lead to a better understanding of the disease and take step toward better treatments.


Breast cancer metastasisBone metastasisGene signatureSignaling network

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medical Genetics, School of MedicineTehran University of Medical SciencesKeshavarz Boulevard, TehranIran