Gene Delays Ovarian Cancer Risk Identified: Ovarian carcinoma is the fifth-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in women in the United States.
Scientists at Cornell’s College of Veterinary Medicine have collaborated on a study that pinpoints which specific genes drive — or delay — this deadly cancer. The results of their study are published in the September 1, 2020 issue of Cell Reports.
Researchers have known for a while that the diseases such as cancer are often caused by multiple genetic factors. The scientists leading the study note that one mutation alone does not turn a cell cancerous. Generally at least two or three are required, and often different combinations of genes can cause the same cancer.
The Cornell researchers wanted to test combinations of possible genetic suspects. They would subsequently parse out which of the many associated mutations were sparking the cancer.
The study revealed what the team suspected. They had expected that ovarian surface stem cells were more apt to become cancerous when hit with mutations. They also unexpectedly discovered genes that had the opposite effect.
“We found there were various genes that would help the process along, but interestingly, there were other genes that, when mutated, actually inhibited the cancer initiation process,” John Schimenti, professor of genetics in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and senior author of the study said.
Schimenti said the findings could be particularly useful for ovarian cancer patients who have their tumors biopsied and sequenced for genetic data.
Source: Cell Reports
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