Research Notes

Common Denominator in Breast Cancer While breast cancer devastates all those affected, researchers have had a tough time finding a common denominator at the molecular level. Now Saraswati Sukumar, associate professor of oncology and pathology, and colleagues at the Johns Hopkins Oncology Center have identified a molecular alteration affecting the vast majority of primary breast cancers. Hypermethylation of the 14-3-3 s gene (s) and subsequent loss of expression are the most consistent molecular

Nadia Halim
May 28, 2000

Common Denominator in Breast Cancer

While breast cancer devastates all those affected, researchers have had a tough time finding a common denominator at the molecular level. Now Saraswati Sukumar, associate professor of oncology and pathology, and colleagues at the Johns Hopkins Oncology Center have identified a molecular alteration affecting the vast majority of primary breast cancers. Hypermethylation of the 14-3-3 s gene (s) and subsequent loss of expression are the most consistent molecular alterations in breast cancer identified to date (A.T. Ferguson et al., "High frequency of hypermethylation at the 14-3-3 s locus leads to gene silencing in breast cancer," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 97:6049-54, May 23, 2000.). They found that s expression is undetectable in 94 percent of breast tumors studied (45 out of 48). Originally identified as a p53-inducible gene that is responsive to DNA damaging agents, s prevents cell cycle...

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