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International team completes systematic, genomic study of cervical cancer
Date:12/25/2013

enetic code across the entire genome) or transcriptome sequencing (focusing on gene expression). In each case, the researchers compared genomic data derived from cervical cancer tumors with genomic data from healthy tissue from the same individual to determine what may have gone wrong or mutated in the genome to allow the cancer to develop. The mutations identified in tumors but not in healthy tissues from the same individuals are referred to as somatic mutations.

The study benefited from the international collaboration of scientists from research institutes across the globe and was made possible by SIGMA the Slim Initiative for Genomic Medicine in the Americas which promotes the study of genomic medicine in the service of global health.

"Low and middle-income countries suffer the largest burden of cancer in the world," said co-author Jorge Melendez, of the National Institute of Genomic Medicine in Mexico City. "Nevertheless, only 5 percent of all the global resources dedicated to this group of diseases are allocated to them. Initiatives that promote joint efforts with developing countries will help to advance not only the knowledge of the shared and distinct biological aspects of cancer diseases, but also highlight local action items to impact public health."

The cooperation of teams from the U.S., Mexico, and Norway was essential in order to sequence samples from a diverse pool of cervical cancer patients.

"Without this sort of international collaboration, the genomic view of a disease can be limited. By analyzing genomic data from diverse populations, we can discover patterns to disease progression in context of the full range of human genetic variation," said co-senior author Helga Salvesen. Salvesen, a professor of clinical medicine at University of Bergen, Norway, was a visiting scientist at the Broad Institute when the study was conducted.

The study identified 13 mutations that occurred frequently enough acros
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Contact: Nicole Davis
ndavis@broadinstitute.org
617-714-7152
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
Source:Eurekalert

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