Deleting just one gene may 'completely prevent' pancreatic cancer

Medical News Today | 5/2/2019 | Ana Sandoiu
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Using a mouse model of pancreatic cancer, researchers have zoomed in on a single gene that stopped aggressive pancreatic cancer from developing when the scientists removed it.

New research sheds light on the genetic drivers behind pancreatic cancer.

Cancer - Form - Cancer - Treatment

Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive form of cancer that tends to be diagnosed quite late and often resists treatment.

According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI), pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the United States. Some estimates predict that by 2020, pancreatic cancer will become the second leading cause of death.

NCI - Estimate - Cases - Cancer - Deaths

The NCI estimate that in 2019 there will be 56,770 new cases of pancreatic cancer and 45,750 deaths resulting from it.

One of the main drivers behind pancreatic cancer is the so-called KRAS oncogene. But new research identifies another gene whose action is crucial for the development of this cancer.

Dr - Diane - Simeone - Director - Pancreatic

Dr. Diane Simeone, who is the director of the Pancreatic Cancer Center at the New York University Langone Health's Perlmutter Cancer Center, is the corresponding author of this new research.

Dr. Simeone and her colleagues carried out a study in mice and human patient samples to examine the role of a gene called "ataxia-telangiectasia group D complementing" (ATDC) in pancreatic tumor formation.

Researchers - Findings - Journal - Genes - Development

The researchers will be publishing their findings in the journal Genes & Development.

The new research started from the theory that tumors arise as a result of adult cells reverting to an earlier, more "primitive" stage similar to that of high-growth fetal development cells.

Adult - Cells - Stage - Injury - Inflammation

Adult cells revert to this stage to repair injury and inflammation and supply the body with new cells that can replace the ones that are lost. In a healthy body, this process quickly starts and stops after it has finished repairing the damage.

However, in combination with other genetic defects, the theory goes, what our bodies intend as a healing process...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Medical News Today
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