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Karmanos Researchers Study the Impact of Galectin-3 on Breast Cancer Disparity in Caucasian and Asian Women
Date:4/14/2008

SAN DIEGO, Calif., April 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Researchers at the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit have been studying racial disparities related to cancer patients. Today, at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting, Karmanos researchers Vitaly Balan, Ph.D., Pratima Nangia-Makker, Ph.D., and Avraham Raz, Ph.D., presented their abstract, Galectin-3 nsSNP rs4644 Foretells Human Breast Cancer Risk Associated with Racial Disparity, exploring factors that suggest why Caucasian women have a significantly higher risk of developing breast cancer than Asian women. This research was done in collaboration with investigators from Karmanos Cancer Institute, in Michigan; Mayo Clinic, in Minnesota; and Zhengzhou University, in China.

(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20071106/KARMANOSCANCERINSTITUTELOGO )

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women, according to the American Cancer Society, and it is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the United States, estimated at more than 40,000 this year alone. It's estimated that in 2007 there were 178,480 new cases of invasive breast cancer and another 62,000 of in situ breast cancer, and Caucasian women are far more prone to develop breast cancer than Asian women, for reasons unknown.

Although the mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 were identified as genetic risk factors for breast cancer more than a decade ago, they only account for five percent of the breast cancer cases. The discovery of additional genes that might also prove significant for breast cancer has been limited especially as related to racial differences in the breast cancer incidences.

Researchers studied galectin-3 which is widely expressed in various tumor cells and its expression is correlated with tumorigenesis, tumor progression and metastasis.
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SOURCE Karmanos Cancer Institute
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