One of the biggest challenges associated with preventing and curing breast cancer is that there appears to be several genes that are associated with the mutations that cause this cancer. Scientists and researchers have been working to identify all the potential causes and have recently made a real breakthrough. At the University of Toronto, researchers discovered that the gene RECQL is responsible for mutations in both Polish and French Canadian women.
Hereditary Breast Cancer
This research study has been focused on types of breast cancer that are inherited, which represent about 10% of all cases. By looking closely at over 20,000 cases, scientists were able to find a strong pattern of occurrence in these two populations. This information provides valuable insight into the behavior or cancer and the role of genetics. In fact, the study revealed that Polish women with the mutation are five times more likely to get breast cancer and the risk for French Canadian women is multiplied 50 times.
While this information has yet to be used to change treatment methods, it does provide hope for future innovations. Not only can women be tested for the gene, in order to identify the likelihood that they will get breast cancer, but scientists anticipate being able to design targeted treatments around each specific genetic mutation.
This individualized approach to creating a treatment plan falls in line with Issels® philosophy about patient care. Not every woman acquires cancer through the same route, so why would everyone receive the same type of treatment? Continued research on the role of genetics in specific populations of people could lead to more effective treatment methods in the future, so stay tuned.