Personalized Nutrition as a Key Contributor to Improving Radiation Response in Breast Cancer
Understanding metabolic and immune regulation inherent to patient populations is key to improving the radiation response for our patients. To date, radiation therapy regimens are prescribed based on tumor type and stage. Patient populations who are noted to have a poor response to radiation such as those of African American descent, those who have obesity or metabolic syndrome, or senior adult oncology patients, should be considered for concurrent therapies with radiation that will improve response. Here, we explore these populations of breast cancer patients, who frequently display radiation resistance and increased mortality rates, and identify the molecular underpinnings that are, in part, responsible for the radiation response and that result in an immune-suppressive tumor microenvironment. The resulting immune phenotype is discussed to understand how antitumor immunity could be improved. Correcting nutrient deficiencies observed in these populations should be considered as a means to improve the therapeutic index of radiation therapy.