The overall objective of this project is to quantify the effects of aromatase inhibitor use on the vascular endothelium in breast cancer survivors. Our central hypothesis is that inhibition of estrogen by aromatase inhibitors will impair vascular relaxation and result in impaired endothelial function. We will test this hypothesis in a prospective, observational, controlled study of breast cancer survivors, with the data collection at baseline and 6 months after initiation of treatment with aromatase inhibitors. Measures will be compared to those for (i) healthy postmenopausal women and (ii) women with triple negative breast cancer who do not receive aromatase inhibitors.
The purpose of this study at the University of Minnesota is to learn more about the effect that aromatase inhibitors have on a postmenopausal woman’s heart and blood vessels. To study this, the researchers are analyzing the blood vessel elasticity and heart health of three groups: women with breast cancer who have been on an aromatase inhibitor (and are HER2-negative); women with triple negative breast cancer; and healthy women. The researchers wanted to enroll up to 50 volunteers from the Greater St. Paul, Minn., area and they enlisted the Army of Women (AOW) to help support their recruitment efforts. The Call to Action for this study was sent to AOW members on May 7, 2014, and the researchers closed enrollment on Aug. 11, 2014. The AOW provided them with 95 women who were interested in enrolling in the study.e inhibitors will impair vascular relaxation and result in impaired endothelial function as compared to that of two patient populations: healthy postmenopausal women and those with triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) who do not receive aromatase inhibitors.