Related Topics: Cancer, News, Research

Genes Tied to Deadliest Ovarian Cancers Identified

New scientific discovery has identified two genes whose mutations appear to be linked to one of the most aggressive forms of ovarian cancer.

AnnA Rushton

Scientists at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in the USA have found an average of 20 mutated genes per each ovarian clear cell cancer studied.  Clear cell carcinoma is generally resistant to standard therapy and these newly identified genes may play a significant role in this type of cancer.

Ovarian clear cell carcinoma accounts for about 10 percent of cancers that start in the cells on the surface of the ovaries. It mainly affects women ages 40 to 80 and is resistant to chemotherapy.

One of the lead researchers Nickolas Papadopoulos, Ph.D., an associate professor of oncology, likened the landscape of cancer-related genes to a few “mountains” (highly prevalent mutations) among many “hills” (genes with less prevalence), and these newly discovered genes constitute one of the biggest mountains found in recent years.

Researchers identified 268 mutations in 253 genes among the eight tumors, with an average of 20 mutations per tumor.  Further research is needed but this is certainly a huge step forward in potential treatment for this form of ovarian cancer.


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