Document Type


Publication Date

February 2008


This article has been peer reviewed. It is the final version as it was published in BMC Cancer 2008, 8:49, freely available from © 2008 Sauter et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


BACKGROUND: Epidemiologic studies suggest that long term low dose celecoxib use significantly lowers breast cancer risk. We previously demonstrated that 400 mg celecoxib taken twice daily for 2 weeks lowered circulating plasma and breast nipple aspirate fluid (NAF) prostaglandin (PG)E2 concentrations in post- but not premenopausal high risk women. We hypothesized that circulating concentrations of celecoxib influenced PGE2 response, and that plasma levels of the drug are influenced by menopausal status. To address these hypotheses, the aims of the study were to determine: 1) if circulating plasma concentrations of celecoxib correlated with the change in plasma or NAF PGE2 concentrations from baseline to end of treatment, and 2) whether menopausal status influenced circulating levels of celecoxib.

METHODS: Matched NAF and plasma were collected from 46 high risk women who were administered celecoxib twice daily for two weeks, 20 subjects receiving 200 mg and 26 subjects 400 mg of the agent. NAF and plasma samples were collected before and 2 weeks after taking celecoxib.

RESULTS: In women taking 400 mg bid celecoxib, plasma concentrations of the agent correlated inversely with the change in NAF PGE2 levels from pre- to posttreatment. Nonsignificant trends toward higher celecoxib levels were observed in post- compared to premenopausal women. There was a significant decrease in NAF but not plasma PGE2 concentrations in postmenopausal women who took 400 mg celecoxib (p = 0.03).

CONCLUSION: In high risk women taking 400 mg celecoxib twice daily, plasma concentrations of celecoxib correlated with downregulation of PGE2 production by breast tissue. Strategies synergistic with celecoxib to downregulate PGE2 are of interest, in order to minimize the celecoxib dose required to have an effect.

Included in

Oncology Commons