American Association for Cancer Research

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Genetic Composition of Multicentric Lung Tumors Appears to be Similar


January 9, 2012

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  • Certain genes can be used to define the lung tumor’s type and ability to clone.
  • Genetic status information might be used to presume genetic background.

SAN DIEGO — Multicentric carcinogenesis with the same genetic mutation appears to occur in lung adenocarcinoma, according to data presented at the AACR-IASLC Joint Conference on Molecular Origins of Lung Cancer: Biology, Therapy and Personalized Medicine, held Jan. 8-11, 2012.

Data also demonstrated that the EGFR and KRAS genes, which are mutually exclusive, can be used to define clinically relevant molecular subsets of lung adenocarcinoma and can define tumor clonality.

“The information on genetic status of multiple lung cancers is valuable and might be able to presume genetic backgrounds for carcinogenesis of the lung,” said Kenji Sugio, M.D., Ph.D., research director and chief of the department of thoracic oncology at the National Kyushu Cancer Center in Fukuoka, Japan.

By using high-resolution computerized tomography (CT), researchers are able to detect small-sized lung tumors and “sometimes multiple tumors.” Sugio and his colleagues analyzed the genotype of the EGFR and KRAS genes and the expression of the EML4-ALK fusion gene in synchronous multiple noninvasive adenocarcinomas to evaluate the possibility of multicentric carcinogenesis. According to Sugio, in five of the nine patients in this study, multiple tumors, which were defined as pathologically noninvasive tumors, showed the same genetic mutation.

“These findings demonstrate that multicentric carcinogenesis under the same genetic backgrounds occurs in lung adenocarcinoma,” Sugio said. “We expected a high incidence rate of the same genetic mutation in synchronous multiple lung adenocarcinomas because the whole lung of patients with lung cancer is thought to be under an almost uniform environment of carcinogen.”

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About the AACR:
The mission of the American Association for Cancer Research is to prevent and cure cancer. Founded in 1907, the AACR is the world’s oldest and largest professional organization dedicated to advancing cancer research. The membership includes 33,000 laboratory, translational and clinical researchers; health care professionals; and cancer survivors and advocates in the United States and more than 90 other countries. The AACR marshals the full spectrum of expertise from the cancer community to accelerate progress in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer through high-quality scientific and educational programs. It funds innovative, meritorious research grants, research fellowships and career development awards to young investigators, and it also funds cutting-edge research projects conducted by senior researchers. The AACR has numerous fruitful collaborations with organizations and foundations in the United States and abroad and functions as the Scientific Partner of Stand Up To Cancer, a charitable initiative that supports groundbreaking research aimed at getting new cancer treatments to patients in an accelerated time frame. The AACR Annual Meeting attracts more than 17,000 participants who share the latest discoveries and developments in the field. Special Conferences throughout the year present novel data across a wide variety of topics in cancer research, treatment and patient care, and Educational Workshops are held for the training of young cancer investigators. The AACR publishes seven major peer-reviewed journals: Cancer Discovery; Cancer Research; Clinical Cancer Research; Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention; Molecular Cancer Therapeutics; Molecular Cancer Research; and Cancer Prevention Research. In 2010, AACR journals received 20 percent of the total number of citations given to oncology journals. The AACR also publishes Cancer Today, a magazine for cancer patients, survivors and their caregivers, which provides practical knowledge and new hope for cancer survivors. A major goal of the AACR is to educate the general public and policymakers about the value of cancer research in improving public health, the vital importance of increases in sustained funding for cancer research and biomedical science, and the need for national policies that foster innovation and the acceleration of progress against the 200 diseases we call cancer.

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About the IASLC:
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) is the only global organization dedicated to the study of lung cancer. Founded in 1974, the association’s membership includes more than 3,500 lung cancer specialists in 80 countries.

IASLC members promote the study of etiology, epidemiology, prevention, diagnosis, treatment and all other aspects of lung cancer and thoracic malignancies. IASLC disseminates information about lung cancer to scientists, members of the medical community and the public and uses all available means to eliminate lung cancer as a health threat for individual patients throughout the world. Membership is open to any physician, scientist, nurse or allied health professional interested in lung cancer, including patients, survivors, caregivers and advocates.

IASLC publishes the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, a valuable resource for medical specialists and scientists who focus on the detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer.

To learn more about IASLC, visit http://iaslc.org

Media Contact:
Jeremy Moore
(215) 446-7109
Jeremy.Moore@aacr.org
In San Diego, Jan. 8-11:
(619) 615-6922