Title

The Morning After: Oral Contraceptive Effects on MCF-7 Breast Cancer Growth Rate and Morphology

Document Type

Oral Presentation

Location

SURC Ballroom C/D

Start Date

15-5-2014

End Date

15-5-2014

Keywords

Breast Cancer, Contraceptives, Freedom Of Choice

Abstract

Oral contraceptives have empowered women globally and provided reproductive choice. Research indicates that over 60 percent of sexually-active women in the US alone use some form of oral contraceptive. When making a choice, many women balance the freedom that contraceptives provide with potential biological consequences. This study investigated the effects of three oral contraceptives and determined their quantitative impact on MCF-7 human breast cancer proliferation rate and cellular morphology. Results showed that the combination pill (estrogen and progesterone) showed the least, mini pill (estrogen) showed the most, and plan B (progesterone) showed intermediate cancer growth rates. Morphological changes occurred between control and oral contraceptive-treated MCF-7 cells but fewer structural differences were observed across all three experimental conditions. Based on our results, we conclude that oral contraceptives with higher estrogen levels produce higher growth rates in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells. We recommend that women considering oral contraception should carefully weigh the benefits against potential risks associated with using this form of birth control.

Poster Number

21

Faculty Mentor(s)

Quitadamo, Ian

Additional Mentoring Department

Biological Sciences

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May 15th, 8:30 AM May 15th, 11:00 AM

The Morning After: Oral Contraceptive Effects on MCF-7 Breast Cancer Growth Rate and Morphology

SURC Ballroom C/D

Oral contraceptives have empowered women globally and provided reproductive choice. Research indicates that over 60 percent of sexually-active women in the US alone use some form of oral contraceptive. When making a choice, many women balance the freedom that contraceptives provide with potential biological consequences. This study investigated the effects of three oral contraceptives and determined their quantitative impact on MCF-7 human breast cancer proliferation rate and cellular morphology. Results showed that the combination pill (estrogen and progesterone) showed the least, mini pill (estrogen) showed the most, and plan B (progesterone) showed intermediate cancer growth rates. Morphological changes occurred between control and oral contraceptive-treated MCF-7 cells but fewer structural differences were observed across all three experimental conditions. Based on our results, we conclude that oral contraceptives with higher estrogen levels produce higher growth rates in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells. We recommend that women considering oral contraception should carefully weigh the benefits against potential risks associated with using this form of birth control.