September 04, 2016 – Case Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers, a research collaboration which includes University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center and Case Western Reserve University, who last year identified new gene mutations unique to colon cancers in African Americans, have found that tumors with these mutations are highly aggressive and more likely to recur and metastasize. These findings partly may explain why African Americans have the highest incidence and death rates of any ethnic group for this disease and may open up the road to develop treatments that target the distinct nature of the disease in African Americans in order to begin to reduce the devastation disproportionately wrought on this population. See the citation to the new publication in PubMed below:
J. Natl. Cancer Inst. 2016 Dec;108(12)
African Americans have the highest incidence and mortality from colorectal cancer (CRC) of any US racial group. We recently described a panel of 15 genes that are statistically significantly more likely to be mutated in CRCs from African Americans than in Caucasians (AA-CRC genes). The current study investigated the outcomes associated with these mutations in African American CRCs (AA-CRCs). In a cohort of 66 patients with stage I-III CRCs, eight of 27 CRCs with AA-CRC gene mutations (Mut+) developed metastatic disease vs only four of 39 mutation-negative (Mut-) cases (P = .03, Cox regression model with two-sided Wald test). Moreover, among stage III cases (n = 33), Mut+ cancers were nearly three times more likely to relapse as Mut- cases (7 of 15 Mut+ vs 3 of 18 Mut-; P = .03, Cox regression model with two-sided Wald test). AA-CRC mutations may thus define a high-risk subset of CRCs that contributes to the overall disparity in CRC outcomes observed in African Americans.
Find here the direct link to the published article.