The study was the ever largest to screen genes for mutations for the most widespread form of lung cancer, called “adenocarcinoma”. The results were shocking, almost more than double the list of genes implicated in type of lung cancer. It’s a next step towards the development of new treatments that can be adapted to adenocarcinomic patients.
The conclusion, from scientists at a dozen institutions in the U.S. and Germany, appear in Thursday’s issue of the journal Nature. Lung cancer is the leading cancer, killing most of the people, in the U.S. and worldwide.
The researchers concentrated on tumors that formed in the lung and were surgically removed. But researchers also hope to study whether the same mutations appear in lung tumors that spread elsewhere.
The scientists collected the sample of188 tumors. They closely examined the genetic makeup of 623 genes to search for those that were the most often mutated. The hypothesis was, if a gene is mutated in so many tumors, it probably plays a role in the disease. The mutations clearly arose in the cancers because they did not appear in healthy tissue from the cancer patients.
The results suggest that, by distinguishing genes, responsible for the development of lung cancer, scientists get focused for developing new therapies.
The work also sets the method for future asp ect of therapy to the particular mutations found in a patient’s tumor.