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(See abstract of a foreign scientific publication of our work)

Breast cancer and breast implants:
can a chronic granulomatous inflammation provoked by a breast implant with rough-spongious surface produce acquired immunity against tumors? - the role of IFN -γ and TNF secreting epitheliold cells. I. Lyras, P. Rapti, T. Nassif, G. Cotta-Pereira and I. Pitanguy. Department of Plastic Surgery, IPGMCC, PC University, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and *Department of Endocrinology, "Lito" Maternity Hospital, Athens, Greece "Recent Developments in Gynecology and Obstetrics", The Parthenon Publishing Group, 1996,page 787,
ISBN 1-85070-700-6

A great deal of recent scientific in the fight against cancer has been achieved in the direction of immunoprotection and immunotherapy. Nowadays, induction of prospective immunity to tumors can actually be accomplished by active immunization procedures.

Recent experiments demonstrate that in some cases of disease, intense inflammatory infiltrates accumulate around cytokine-secreting tumors(1). (Eosinophils and macrophages dominate IFN-γ secreting turnors and massive lymphocyte infiltrates, surround IL-2 producing turnors). This way, depending on the type of infiltrate recruited around a turnor or a granuloma by different cytokines, different effector as well as accessory cell functions lead to the optimal activation of T cells.

Local production of cytokines and lymphokines may augment specific T cell responses to turnor antigens. Until 1991, silicone gel-filled breast implants, (used since 1960 for breast augmentation and breast reconstruction) were considered safe, biocompatible medical devices. For the past 4 years their use has been restricted because of the great public and scientific concern related to the complications they provoke, although recent reports demonstrate that breast cancer is rarer and of better prognosis in women that carry breast implants.(2,3,4)

The present is based mainly on the importance of surface morphology of the implants and how it affects the healing process on the site of their inclusion. The results of the present study have offered us good reasons for further investigations in colaboration with other centers.

Currently, we are investigating the variations of interferon, turnor necrosis factor and other lymphokine blood levels in women with breast prostheses before and after the implantation of these devices for both aesthetic and reconstructive reasons.

Another experimental study, currently underway in our laboratory examines the effects of the presence of specially designed and patented by Dr. I. Lyras, medical implants in animals suffering from provoked or diagnosed cancer.

A different model of active immunization against tumors is presented. By a specially designed high quality biocompatible medical implant (with rough-spongious surface morphology) placed somewhere inside the body, we can provoke a permanent low grade granulomatous chronic inflammation and this way a nonspecific stimulation of the immune system of patients.

The mechanism of this stimulation involves a markedly increased humoral response, lymphocyte memory enhancement and continuous antigenic activity and is based on the rationale that an implant containing granuloma behaves and should be considered as a cytokine and lymphokine-secreting tumor. Interferon-γ (IFN-γ), tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and interleukin (IL)-secreting lymphocytes and epithelioid cells are key factors of this process.

We propose that this method of preventive nonspecific stimulation of the immune system should be seriously considered as a useful approach for achieving acquired immune defence against cancer.


Currently evaluating some of the permanent and absorvable fillers in plastic surgery.
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(This project is being monitored by Europen Health Authorities)