A remarkable breakthrough in breast cancer research has emerged from the University of Oulu. Researchers have found that the extracellular matrix protein, collagen XVIII, has a pivotal role in the progression and metastasis of breast cancer. More importantly, when this collagen's function was inhibited, it amplified the efficacy of common targeted therapies for breast cancer. These findings, published in 'The Journal of Clinical Investigation', may usher in a new era of effective cancer drugs. Collagen XVIII's newly discovered regulatory role in epidermal growth factor receptor signaling could lead to enhanced drug effectiveness and even reversal of drug resistance. Elevated collagen XVIII levels are also linked with aggressive breast cancer, making it a potential marker for the disease. This research aligns with the University's wider efforts to understand collagens in various diseases.