V Scholar Plus Award – extended funding for exceptional V Scholars
Tamoxifen is an extremely effective drug for patients with estrogen sensitive breast cancer but it comes with a variety of side effects, including hot flashes. We use mice to test if symptoms similar to hot flashes are mediated by the effects of tamoxifen on the brain. We study a region of the brain that is very sensitive to estrogen and controls body temperature. We have identified differences in this region that are associated with changes in body temperature during tamoxifen treatment. Our immediate goal is to test if we can use this knowledge to block temperature changes in mice receiving tamoxifen. Our hope is that these studies could one day help us reduce hot flashes and improve the lives of breast cancer patients and survivors.