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Connecting cancer genes
Date:5/15/2008

ng additional genes that might act to suppress tumour development, which are not readily detected in most surveys.

Human cancer cells frequently contain many mutations that are not involved in the development of cancer do not drive cancer development but are produced by increased mutation rates in cancer cells and are 'passengers'. Discerning which are driver and which are passenger mutations is a challenge for human cancer gene studies.

"The benefit of our system in the mouse is that, unlike human tumours, which usually contain many different types of genetic alternations, the causal mutations that initiate these tumours in mice can be easily identified and studied," explains Dr Adams, "These studies are complementary to and enrich the analysis of human cancers."

The project was made possible by the Sanger Institute's high-throughput sequencing and computational resources, which allowed the team to identify new potential cancer genes in the mouse. By comparing their data to genome-wide human cancer datasets generated by the Sanger Institutes' Cancer Genome Project, they could show that at some of the of the newly identified genes were potentially relevant to human cancer formation.

The team are currently carrying out other cancer screens using viruses and additional methods to disrupt cancer genes. These screens are searching for genes and gene interactions in the formation of bowel, lymphoid and breast cancers.


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Contact: Don Powell
don@sanger.ac.uk
44-012-234-96928
Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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