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International symposium explores genetic link to mesothelioma and other cancers
Date:10/28/2011

HONOLULU--The University of Hawaii Cancer Center and The Queen's Medical Center (QMC) will host an international symposium on Friday, December 2, 2011 from 8:15 a.m. 4:30 p.m. at The Queen's Conference Center Auditorium to discuss new information related to the recent discovery of the BAP1 genetic mutation and its link to mesothelioma, melanoma and potentially other cancers.

The Third Annual Translational Cancer Medicine Symposium will feature more than 20 global experts in cancer genetics including keynote speaker, Carlo M. Croce, M.D., Director of the Human Cancer Genetics Program of The Ohio State University; Joseph Testa, Ph.D., Director of the Genomics Facility at Fox Chase Cancer Center; and Michele Carbone, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the University of Hawaii Cancer Center whose research team announced in August its discovery of the BAP1 gene mutation's link to mesothelioma and other cancers. "We are excited to bring these experts to Hawaii to work together to find ways to reduce the suffering and death from cancers caused by this mutation," said Carbone.

The BAP1 cancer syndrome is caused by inherited mutations of the BAP1 gene. Carriers of the BAP1 mutation can develop mesothelioma, uveal melanoma, melanocytic tumors and other carcinomas. When individuals with the BAP1 mutation are exposed to asbestos or erionite, mesothelioma appears to predominate and may be the cause of death in 50% of family members. This discovery provides physicians with a new tool to identify individuals at very high risk of developing these types of cancers. The study on the BAP1 discovery was published online in Nature Genetics on August 28, 2011.

Mesothelioma tumors are typically associated with asbestos and erionite exposure. Erionite, a naturally occurring mineral fiber similar to asbestos, is found in rock formations and volcanic ash. A small fraction of individuals exposed to erionite or asbestos actually develop mesothelioma, one of the deadl
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Contact: Kevin Cassel
kevin@cc.hawaii.edu
808-564-5916
University of Hawaii Cancer Center
Source:Eurekalert

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