We don't yet know exactly what causes most cases of endometrial cancer, but we do know there are risk factors, like obesity and hormone imbalance, that are strongly linked to this cancer.
We know that most endometrial cancer cells have estrogen and/or progesterone receptors on their surfaces. Somehow, interaction of these receptors and these hormones leads to increased growth of the endometrium. This increased growth can become more and more abnormal until it develops into a cancer.
As noted in the risk factors section, many of the known endometrial cancer risk factors affect the balance between estrogen and progesterone in the body.
Scientists are learning more about changes in the DNA of certain genes that occur when normal endometrial cells become cancer. Some of these are discussed in What's New in Endometrial Cancer Research?
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Last Revised: March 27, 2019