Science for Prevention: Identifying potential breast carcinogens

February 13, 2024
1:00 pm US Eastern Time

Slides & Resources


Slides & Related Webinars

Slides: Using the Key Characteristics Framework to Identify Potential Breast Carcinogens, Dr. Jennifer Kay, Silent Spring Institute

Breast Cancer, Pinkwashing, and the Importance of Prevention. CHE-Alaska webinar, November 2023.

PFAS, Phenols and Parabens: Links to Hormone-Mediated Cancers. EDC Strategies Partnership webinar, October 2023.

Reducing Breast Cancer Risk by Eliminating Parabens and Phthalates. EDC Strategies Partnership webinar, May 2023.


Additional Resources

Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program review - EPA Docket

EDSP review - Direct link for submitting comments (due February 26, 2024)

Kay J et al. 2024. Application of the Key Characteristics Framework to Identify Potential Breast Carcinogens Using Publicly Available in Vivo, in Vitro, and in Silico Data. Environmental Health Perspectives 132:1. https://doi.org/10.1289/EHP132

Key Characteristics project

Jones R et al. 2024. Invited Perspective: New Motivations and Future Directions for Investigating Environmental Risk Factors for Breast Cancer. Environmental Health Perspectives 132:1. https://doi.org/10.1289/EHP13777

Gross L. 2024. More Than 900 Widely Used Chemicals May Increase Breast Cancer RiskInside Climate News January 10, 2024.

Marusic K. 2024. More than 900 common chemicals linked to breast cancer risk: Study. Environmental Health News Jan. 24, 2024.

Kay, J et al 2022. Chemical Effects on Breast Development, Function and Cancer Risk: Existing Knowledge and New Opportunities. Current Environmental Health Reports, 9: 535-562. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40572-022-00376-2


Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths among women globally, and is the most commonly diagnosed form of invasive cancer within the US. Identifying and addressing preventable exposures associated with increased breast cancer risk can help to reduce this burden of disease.

In this 45-minute EDC Strategies Partnership webinar, Dr. Jennifer Kay discussed a new study, “Application of the Key Characteristics Framework to Identify Potential Breast Carcinogens Using Publicly Available in Vivo, in Vitro, and in Silico Data.” The study identifies nearly 280 chemicals that induce mammary tumors in rodents and over 600 additional chemicals that stimulate estrogen or progesterone signaling. 

The paper updates a prior list of breast carcinogens using the key characteristics approach to identify the hazards of environmental chemicals. Dr. Kay discussed the role of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in the development of breast cancer, and how they identified the chemicals potentially involved in breast cancer.

This webinar was moderated by Sarah Howard of the Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies (HEEDS) program of Environmental Health Sciences.

Featured Speaker

Dr. Jenny Kay is a Research Scientist at the Silent Spring Institute where she investigates the biological effects of chemicals that increase breast cancer risk. Her goals are to develop approaches for classifying chemicals based on their potential to increase breast cancer risk, to map the key changes those chemicals cause to stimulate cancer development, and to translate that research into chemical policy impacts. She received her PhD in Biological Engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and helped found the MIT Superfund Research Program (SRP) as a postdoctoral fellow. There, Dr. Kay investigated the processes by which a Superfund chemical contaminant causes cancer in animals, and she led the MIT SRP Research Translation Core, serving as the communication hub between MIT SRP researchers and government agencies, community partners, other academics, and the general public.

This webinar was hosted by the EDC Strategies Partnership, which is co-chaired by Sharyle Patton (Commonweal Biomonitoring Resource Center), Jerry Heindel and Sarah Howard (Environmental Health Sciences' Healthy Environment and Endocrine Disruptor Strategies, HEEDS), Génon Jensen (Health and Environment Alliance, HEAL), and Rachel Massey (Collaborative for Health and Environment, CHE). To see a full list of past calls and webinars related to EDCs and listen to or view recordings, please visit our partnership page. This webinar was brought to you in partnership with Breast Cancer Prevention Partners.