Estrogens and estrogen receptors (ERs) regulate metabolism in both normal physiology and in disease. The metabolic characteristics of intrinsic breast cancer subtypes change based on their ER expression. Crosstalk between estrogen signaling elements and several key metabolic regulators alters metabolism in breast cancer cells, and enables tumors to rewire their metabolism to adapt to poor perfusion, transient nutrient deprivation, and increased acidity. This leads to the selection of drug-resistant and metastatic clones. In this review we discuss studies revealing the role of estrogen signaling elements in drug resistance development and metabolic adaptation during breast cancer progression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-38
Number of pages14
JournalTrends in Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • breast cancer
  • cancer metabolism
  • drug resistance
  • estrogen signaling
  • metabolic regulators
  • nutrient availability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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