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Genetic Mutation Linked to Prostate Cancer in Blacks

Finding may explain higher incidence among blacks than whites

MONDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers have identified a mutation in a small number of black American men with a family history of prostate cancer.

This germline mutation of the androgen receptor (AR) may prove to be a genetic biomarker for familial prostate cancer in the black American male population, according to the team at Louisiana State University in New Orleans.

Black American men have a higher incidence of prostate cancer than any other racial group. The small amount of research that's been done on the role that AR mutations play in prostate cancer has been limited to white men.

This study found a germline AR-A1675T substitution mutation in the DNA-binding domain in three black American men with a family history of early-onset prostate cancer. This mutation may contribute to prostate cancer by "altering the AR DNA-binding affinity and its response to androgens, non-androgenic steroids or anti-androgens," according to a news release about the study.

The study was published online this week in the Asian Journal of Andrology.

Further research is needed to learn more about the role this mutation plays in prostate cancer in black Americans, the researchers said.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about prostate cancer.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Asian Journal of Andrology, news release, Feb. 22, 2010

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