New Tumor Marker Found

Scientists say it's involved in many kinds of cancers

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MONDAY, March 1, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- A new tumor marker that's associated with many kinds of cancers, including one-third of breast and colon cancers, has been identified by Boston University School of Medicine researchers.

They identified this new tumor marker (absence of SMAD8) using a new university-developed procedure called Targeted Expressed Gene Display (TEGD), which can identify related members of a large family of genes, their variants and their patterns of expression.

The research appears in the March 1 issue of Cancer Research.

TEGD could prove an important component in the accurate diagnosis of diseases caused by the absence or loss of critical components of the body, the researchers say. Information provided by TEGD could help assess disease prognosis and design customized treatment for patients.

"We think that TEGD has the potential to advance the ability to probe gene families for genetic and epigenetic defects to a new level of sophistication and could be adopted for routine use in the near future," study author Sam Thiagalingam, an assistant professor of medicine, genetics & genomics and pathology, says in a prepared statement.

More information

The U.S. National Cancer Institute has more about cancer.

SOURCE: Cancer Research, news release, March 1, 2004

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