Virtually all cases of cervical cancer are caused by persistent infections from several of the human papillomaviruses (HPV) — a family of viruses that also cause common skin warts and genital warts. HPV is the most commonly sexually transmitted infection in young adults, yet only a small subset of these infections lead to cervical cancer.
"Some people are better able than others to mount an immune response that suppresses their HPV infection," says Mark H. Einstein, M.D., associate professor of obstetrics & gynecology and women's health at Einstein. "We suspected that this advantage was probably due to variations in genes that play key roles in the body's immune response."
To find out, the researchers recruited 480 women and divided them into two groups: those with high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN), a premalignant condition caused by HPV that can lead to cervical cancer; and a control group of women who had tested positive for HPV but had not developed high-grade CIN.
The researchers took cells from the women and looked for genetic differences between the two groups. They focused on a gene called TAP, known to be crucial to the immune system's ability to recognize viruses and eliminate them from the body.
Dr. Einstein and his colleagues found that study participants had key differences at two locations in their TAP genes. Those women who possessed one or the other of these two gene variants were less than half as likely as other women to have developed high-grade CIN. Even women infected with the HPV types most likely to lead to cervical cancer were afforded protection by these variants. The finding suggests that knowledge of these genetic variants, known as polymorphisms, can provide important information regarding protection against cervical cancer.
"We're hopeful that our findings will lead to a genetic test that will help us predict which patients with persistent HPV infection are most likely to develop high-grade CIN and, ultimately, cervical cancer," says Dr. Einstein. "That knowledge should help us in mapping out effective treatment plans that are tailored to the individual patient. This trend of personalized medicine is becoming more common as new technologies offer hope of better tests."
The paper, "Genetic Variants in TAP are Associated with High-Grade Cervical Neoplasia," is published in the February edition of Clinical Cancer Research. Other Einstein researchers include Robert Burk, M.D., Gary Goldberg, M.D., Nicolas Schlecht, Ph.D., Suzanne Leanza, Ph.D., and Lydia G. Chiu, M.P.H. Contributing from Einstein and Long Island Jewish Medical Center, New Hyde Park, NY, was Bettie M. Steinberg, Ph.D.
Dr. Einstein's research was funded by the Gynecologic Cancer Foundation.
Deirdre Branley | EurekAlert!
Flow of cerebrospinal fluid regulates neural stem cell division
21.05.2018 | Helmholtz Zentrum München - Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Gesundheit und Umwelt
Chemists at FAU successfully demonstrate imine hydrogenation with inexpensive main group metal
21.05.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.
The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...
Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.
Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...
A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.
Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
18.05.2018 | Information Technology
18.05.2018 | Information Technology