The Toriola Lab seeks to understand the molecular basis of mammographic breast density, especially in premenopausal women, and how this can be utilized in breast cancer prevention. Previous and ongoing studies include:

  1. Receptor Activator of Nuclear Factor-kB (RANK)-axis and Mammographic Density: We showed that breast tissue RANKL gene expression and circulating RANK biomarkers (RANK and sRANKL) are positively associated with mammographic breast density in premenopausal women. Funding: Susan G. Komen Foundation (CCR15332379), NIH/NCI (R21CA216515).
  2. RANKL Inhibition and Breast Tissue Biomarkers: The goal of this phase 1 clinical trial is to quantify the effect of RANKL inhibition with denosumab on breast tissue markers in high-risk premenopausal women with dense breasts. Funding: Siteman Cancer Center Siteman Investment Program and Centene Foundation.
  3. RANKL Inhibition and Mammographic Breast Density (TRIDENT): The goal of this ongoing phase II clinical trial is to quantify the effect of RANKL inhibition with denosumab on mammographic breast density in premenopausal women. Funding: NIH/NCI (R37CA23560).
  4. Metabolite Profiles and Mammographic Density in Premenopausal Women: The goal of this study is to use high-throughput state-of-the art, well-validated metabolomics platforms to investigate the metabolome of mammographic density in premenopausal women. Funding: NIH/NCI (R01CA246592)