Researchers at the UNC School of Medicine conducted a comprehensive genetic analysis of invasive bladder cancer tumors to discover that the disease shares genetic similarities with two forms of breast cancer.
The finding is significant because a greater understanding of the genetic basis of cancers, such as breast cancers, has in the recent past led to the development of new therapies and diagnostic aids.
Bladder cancer, which is the fourth most common malignancy in men and ninth in women in the United States, claimed more than 15,000 lives last year.
The analysis of 262 bladder cancer tumors, published online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, revealed that the invasive form of the disease can be classified into two distinct genetic subtypes – basal-like and luminal – which were shown to be highly similar to the basal and luminal subtypes of breast cancer first described by Charles Perou, PhD, the May Goldman Shaw Distinguished Professor of Molecular Oncology at UNC Lineberger.
“It will be particularly interesting to see whether the bladder subtypes, like the breast subtypes, are useful in stratification for therapy,” said lead author William Kim, MD, a researcher at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and associate professor in the departments of genetics and medicine at UNC.
Mapping genetic signaling pathways of breast cancer subtypes has led to the development of drugs to treat patients and diagnostic aids that help physicians determine the best course of therapy for patients. Because the identified bladder cancer subtypes share many of the same genetic signaling pathways of breast cancer, researchers hope that the identification of the genetic subtypes can lead to similar advances.
“Currently there are no approved targeted therapies for bladder cancer,” said lead author Jeffrey Damrauer, graduate student in the Curriculum of Genetics and Molecular Biology at the UNC School of Medicine. “Our hope is that the identification of these subtypes will aid in the discovery of targetable pathways that will advance bladder cancer treatment.”
The study also revealed a possible answer to why women diagnosed with bladder cancer have overall poorer outcomes compared to males. Analysis showed that female patients had a significantly higher incidence of the deadlier basal-like tumors. But researchers said that more research is needed before a definite link between the subtype and survival rate can be confirmed.
Dr. Kim’s lab has developed a gene map – BASE47 – that proved successful as a prognostic aid when applied to the tumor samples in the study. The PAM50 genetic test, a similar genetic map developed in the Perou lab, was recently approved as a clinical diagnostic tool by the FDA.
Additional LCCC members contributing to this work are Katherine Hoadley, PhD; David Chism, MD; Cheng Fan; Christopher Tiganelli, MD; Sara Wobker, MD; Jen Jen Yeh, MD; Matthew Milowsky, MD; and Joel Parker, PhD.
This work was supported by National Institutes of Health Grant R01 CA142794 and Integrative Vascular Biology Training Grant T32-HL069768. Dr. Kim is a Damon Runyon Merck Clinical Investigator. Dr. Kim and Damrauer are inventors on the patent for the BASE47.
William Davis | EurekAlert!
Researchers release the brakes on the immune system
18.10.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Norovirus evades immune system by hiding out in rare gut cells
12.10.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
18.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
18.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
18.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy