October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and as we pause to think about the consequences of breast cancer for ourselves and our families, a question presents itself - how can we best use the scientific knowledge collected over decades of research to treat breast cancer and reduce its incidence? Based on all that we have learned in recent years, have we as a society taken all possible steps to prevent breast cancer? Breast cancer is now the second most common cancer among American women. It is outranked only by skin cancer. According the National Cancer Institute an estimated 5 to 10 percent of breast cancers arise from inherited gene mutations. The vast majority of women diagnosed with the disease are not thought to have significant family histories of the disease. Increasingly, lifetime exposures to toxic chemicals in our food, water, the environment and even in cosmetics are thought to play a role in the development of breast cancer.