Breast cancer treatment breakthrough after ‘milestone’ gene discovery

The latest breast cancer research could lead to more personalised care for patients and help further understanding of the causes of the disease, scientists have said.

A study has been hailed as giving a more complete picture of the changes in DNA in breast cancer, providing potential opportunities for new treatments.

The research involved people from across the globe, and focussed on studying the 560 breast cancer genomes, with results highlighting that breast cancer genomes are “highly individual.”

Researchers looked at the genomes in patients and concentrated on the mutations which allowed the disease to grow. It was found that women with a higher risk of breast and ovarian cancers has entirely different genome profiles.

Dr Serena Nik-Zainal, who led the research, said: “In the future, we’d like to be able to profile individual cancer genomes so that we can identify the treatment most likely to be successful for a woman or man diagnosed with breast cancer. It is a step forward to personalised healthcare for cancer.

Dr Ewan Birney, from the European Bioinformatics Institute, said: “The study both gave us the first large scale view of the rest of the genome, uncovering some new reasons why breast cancer arises, and gave us an unexpected way to characterise the types of mutations that happen in certain breast cancers.”

With this research, there are hopes that more tailored treatments and personalised medicines will be the future of breast cancer treatment.

 

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