Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Location of potential familial lung cancer gene discovered

27.07.2004


Researchers have discovered a possible inherited component for lung cancer, a disease normally associated with external causes, such as cigarette smoking. An interdisciplinary consortium consisting of 12 research institutions and universities, including the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), both part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), identified a major lung cancer susceptibility region on a segment of chromosome 6. The findings appear in a just-posted-online edition of American Journal of Human Genetics and will appear in print in the September 2004 issue.

The Genetic Epidemiology of Lung Cancer Consortium (GELCC) examined 52 families who had at least three first-degree family members affected by lung, throat, or laryngeal cancer. Of these 52 families, 36 had affected members in at least two generations. Using 392 known genetic markers, which are DNA sequences that are known to be common sites of genetic variation, the researchers generated and then compared the alleles (the different variations each gene can take) of all affected and non-affected family members who were willing to participate in the study.

The researchers found strong evidence that a lung cancer susceptibility gene or genes is co-inherited with a genetic marker on chromosome 6. Markers on chromosomes 12, 14, and 20 also indicated possible linkage to lung cancer susceptibility, although the results were not as strong. Identifying the locus was a critical first step, but more work needs to be done.



"The genetic markers are like those mileage markers you see on the side of the highway," explained NCI’s Jonathon Wiest, Ph.D. "They can be very useful for broad navigational purposes, but at the same time they don’t give you precise information about all the interesting things that may lie along the highway."

The next goal for these researchers is to more closely examine this region of chromosome 6 with the aim of locating the exact gene or genes that cause lung cancer susceptibility. The identified region corresponds to roughly a 20 million base pair segment on the long arm of chromosome 6. The region contains numerous genes that are likely candidates for the susceptibility gene, including four suspected tumor suppressor genes. However, Wiest pointed out that "often you can discover a new function for a gene that normally works in a different cellular pathway, so you never know what you’re going to find."

Another interesting discovery the team made involved the effects of smoking on cancer risk for carriers and non-carriers of the predicted familial lung cancer gene. They found that in non-carriers, the more they smoked, the greater their risk of cancer. In carriers, on the other hand, any amount of smoking increased lung cancer risk. These findings suggest that smoking even a small amount can lead to cancer for individuals with inherited susceptibility.

The researchers also plan to continue screening additional families who could have familial lung cancer, to confirm this particular susceptibility region, and perhaps find additional regions. "The discovery of genes for other types of cancer has led to better understanding of those diseases, which in turn can lead to better strategies for treatment and prevention. We hope that uncovering a gene or genes responsible for lung cancer will do the same for this devastating disease," said co-lead author Joan Bailey-Wilson, Ph.D., NHGRI.

Lung cancer is by far the leading cause of cancer death in the United States (over 160,000 deaths expected in 2004), and the five-year survival rate is only 15 percent. Such a high mortality, combined with the large amount of spontaneous lung cancers that arise from smoking, makes finding potential histories of familial lung cancer or collecting genetic samples extremely difficult and time consuming. "This study is just further proof of the importance of cooperative efforts and large-scale science in genetic epidemiology research," said Daniela Seminara, Ph.D., NCI.

Geoff Spencer | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.nih.gov

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Cancer diagnosis: no more needles?
25.05.2018 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

nachricht Less is more? Gene switch for healthy aging found
25.05.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Alternsforschung - Fritz-Lipmann-Institut e.V. (FLI)

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Powerful IT security for the car of the future – research alliance develops new approaches

The more electronics steer, accelerate and brake cars, the more important it is to protect them against cyber-attacks. That is why 15 partners from industry and academia will work together over the next three years on new approaches to IT security in self-driving cars. The joint project goes by the name Security For Connected, Autonomous Cars (SecForCARs) and has funding of €7.2 million from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Infineon is leading the project.

Vehicles already offer diverse communication interfaces and more and more automated functions, such as distance and lane-keeping assist systems. At the same...

Im Focus: Molecular switch will facilitate the development of pioneering electro-optical devices

A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.

The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...

Im Focus: LZH showcases laser material processing of tomorrow at the LASYS 2018

At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.

At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...

Im Focus: Self-illuminating pixels for a new display generation

There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?

At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

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...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

In focus: Climate adapted plants

25.05.2018 | Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

In focus: Climate adapted plants

25.05.2018 | Event News

Flow probes from the 3D printer

25.05.2018 | Machine Engineering

Less is more? Gene switch for healthy aging found

25.05.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>