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UCLA cancer researchers perform complete genomic sequencing of brain cancer cell line
Date:1/28/2010

00 laboratories worldwide, Nelson said. They picked the cell line, he said, because it has been so thoroughly examined. The sequencing will allow scientists who have studied the cell line to reinterpret their findings and may prompt researchers to move in new directions going forward.

The sequencing revealed virtually all potentially cancer-causing chromosomal translocations and genetic deletions and mutations that may have resulted in this cancer's development. The study involved taking the very long strands of genetic material from the cancer cells and sheering them, or cutting them up randomly. Billions of different DNA fragments from this cancer were simultaneously read with next generation sequencing technology. The genetic material was analyzed more than a billion times to ensure the results would be both highly sensitive and accurate, Nelson said.

"This was the most thorough sequencing analysis of an individual cancer cell line that has been performed to date," Nelson said. "We developed specific informatics tools to help with the analysis and used the most powerful technology available. As scientists, we previously didn't know most of the mutations that occur within a given cancer we're blind to them. Now this new technology allows us to look at every single cancer and decode that cancer genome completely so there's no chance we're missing a mutation that may be causing the disease."

Knowing the genes that are mutated and driving the cancer's growth could allow clinicians to choose therapies most suited to attack the specific molecular signature of that patient's disease to provide more effective treatment. The sequencing also could reveal a molecular abnormality that is driving the cancer, unveiling a target that could lead to the development of new therapies that home in on cancer cells and leave the healthy cells alone.

Patient-specific diagnostics also could be developed to monitor for cancer recurrence, Nelson s
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Contact: Kim Irwin
kirwin@mednet.ucla.edu
310-206-2805
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert

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