Food Heal Cancer
Newly Discovered Breast Cancer Genes Will Save Lives
Previous research has identified genes BRCA1 and BRCA2 as being responsible for some types of breast cancer. These genes are common to everyone, but they may mutate and cause tumors. These mutating genes account for one out of every 10 breast cancer cases.
The newly discovered genes may help in treating as many as four of five cases.
The Breast Cancer Research Centre at the Institute of Cancer Research in London has been working hard at studying breast cancer cases for five years. During these five years, researchers studied the DNA of 104 patients.
They studied women with oestrogen receptor-positive breast cancer, which leads to four of five breast tumors. In this type of breast cancer, oestrogen attaches itself to the surface of cancer cells. Once it's there, it feeds and helps the tumors grow.
One of the most commonly used breast cancer drugs is tamoxifen. Its main purpose is to sever the oestrogen supply. The only problem with this treatment is that eventually the tumors become resistant to the drugs. After surgery, the tumors reappear and then spread to the rest of the body.
The newly discovered genes will help researchers pinpoint what causes the tumors to grow in the first place.
What is startling about the three newly discovered genes related to this type of breast cancer is that they have been overlooked for so many years. Dr. Anita Dunbier is one of the researchers on the project. Dr. Dunbier says, "We found the genes in a place we thought we knew a lot about, it is like finding gold in Trafalgar Square."
Professor Mitch Dowel worked as a researcher on the project. Dowel says, "This research is exciting because it shows that while the oestrogen receptor is the main driver of hormonal breast cancer, there are others next door to it that also appear to influence breast cancer behavior. "
How the Discovered Genes Will Benefit Women
The discovery of the three new genes will lead to treatment that wasn't previously available and will possibly save many lives every year.
Researchers found three new genes, and the one they specifically will target is called C6ORF211. This gene is the one primarily responsible for causing the tumors to grow and causes breast cancer to increase. This gene will be the focus of intensive drug research.
New drugs may be available for treating breast cancer within five years.
Previous Gene Research on Breast Cancer
Previous research has shown that 5 percent to 10 percent of breast cancer is passed by abnormal genes and is hereditary. Women and men are more at risk for breast cancer if a relative has had it, if a relative has had both breast and ovarian cancer or if someone is of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage.
While some groups are at higher risk for breast cancer, there are different measures someone can take to reduce risk. Suggestions include keeping a healthy weight, eating healthy and nutritious food, exercising, drinking alcohol infrequently and not smoking.
Breast Cancer Genes: More on "Next Door" Genes
Breast Cancer Genes: Hereditary Breast CancerBy Lee Aurelius - An American expat and freelance writer living in Europe. Work has appeared on various websites, with a focus on website development and health and wellness, and travel.
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