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First genetic factor in prostate cancer prognosis identified
Date:4/9/2013

ver the following five years, compared to 7% of those patients who were not carriers. Five years after diagnosis, 19% of BRCA2 mutation carriers with early-stage disease had died, compared with 4% of the non-carriers; there were no significant differences between BRCA1 mutation carriers and non-carriers.

Castro, the first author of the article, says: "These data turn the BRCA2 gene into the first genetic factor for prostate cancer prognosis", to which she adds: "The results of this study suggest the need for a paradigm shift in the clinical management of patients with prostate cancer who are carriers of mutations in the BRCA genes; current treatment standards for these patients appear to be insufficient and there are no specific action guidelines".

"Now that we have managed to identify patients with potentially lethal disease, our next challenge is to explore the most adequate treatments with the least side effects that have a real impact on survival", says Olmos.

Prostate cancer is the second most common type of cancer in men worldwide, although in developed countries it is the most frequently found tumour.

This is the case in Spain, where more than 25,000 new cases are diagnosed each year, making it the third cause of cancer-related deaths in men.

Over the past few decades, an increase in cases has been observed due, above all, to longer life expectancies and the widespread use of the PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) screening test in the general population. Fortunately, a decrease in mortality for this disease has also been observed, due to the majority of diagnoses being carried out at an early stage and due to improved treatments.

Even so, there are still cases in which the disease is fatal and efforts as well as resources are being dedicated to identifying those patients with the worst prognosis and to establishing the most appropriate therapeutic strategies.


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Contact: Nuria Noriega
comunicacion@cnio.es
Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Oncologicas (CNIO)
Source:Eurekalert

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