Faulty gene linked to prostate cancer risk

Oct. 31, 2006 at 11:35 AM
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WARSAW, Poland, Oct. 31 (UPI) -- Polish scientists say missing sections of a gene involved in protecting the body from DNA damage nearly doubles the risk of prostate cancer.

Researchers assessed nearly 2,000 Polish men who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer between 1999 and 2005 to see if they carried the CHEK2 kinase gene. The findings were compared with those from approximately 5,500 healthy males from the general population..

The same missing sections (exons 9 and 10) were found in 24 of the healthy people (0.4%) and in 15 of the men who had been diagnosed with the disease (0.8%). The researchers also found the deletion in four of 249 men with familial prostate cancer.

Based on their findings, the authors calculate the particular deletion nearly doubled the risk of developing prostate cancer in general, and almost quadrupled it in men with a family history of the disease.

The authors suggest the deletion may also be relatively common among men from other parts of eastern Europe and possibly elsewhere in the world.

The researcher appears online in the Journal of Medical Genetics.

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