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Could breast cancer be caused by a virus?

Caroline Ford, winner of the 2004 Australian Fresh Science Award, talks about her PhD work on a possible viral cause of breast cancer.

The virus known as HHMMTV is strongly linked with breast cancer in the Australian population. If further research shows that this virus causes cancer, the possibility of a preventative vaccine would be of enormous consequence. Breast cancer is the most common cancer of Australian women, affecting one in 11 women. While many risk factors have been identified, no clear cause of breast cancer has been defined. Many people believe that breast cancer is purely a hereditary disease, yet hereditary breast cancer has been estimated to account for only 5%of all cases. In recent years many other cancers have been linked to viruses, most notably cervical cancer and human papilloma virus. The research team in Australia think that breast cancer may be caused by a combination of hormonal, genetic and environmental factors. The research has focused on the role of one environmental agent, a virus termed HHMMTV, as a possible cause of breast cancer.

This event is in association with the British Council (Australia).


Caroline Ford | talks | www


Date and Time:

14 September 2004 at 7:00 pm


1 hour 30 minutes



The Royal Institution of Great Britain
21 Albemarle Street
+44 20 74 09 29 92

More at The Royal Institution of Great Britain...



£5, but free to Members of the Royal Institution

Available from:

020 7409 2992

Additional Information:

Nearest tube: Green Park

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