Patients may find that social interaction helps the success rate of breast cancer treatment, according to a new study.
New research carried out on mice at the University of Chicago has indicated that living in isolation made cancerous tumours larger, although it was not discovered why this happened.
The report appeared in Cancer Prevention Research and the journal's deputy editor Dr Caryn Lerman stated that it backed up the argument that environmental stress can lead to the development of cancer.
Dr Lerman said: "This study uses an elegant preclinical model and shows that social isolation alters expression of genes important in mammary gland tumour growth."
The authors of the study pointed out that scientists can look at ways of blocking the development of this form of cancer if the cell-type which is causing the growth can be identified.
A recent study at the New University of Pennsylvania has uncovered patterns that could remove some of the painful side effects of the breast cancer drugs, aromatase inhibitors.