Patterico's Pontifications

4/2/2008

Scientists Identify Possible Genetic Link for Lung Cancer

Filed under: Miscellaneous — DRJ @ 10:30 am



[Guest post by DRJ]

Nature announced three independent genetic studies suggest some people are more at risk for lung cancer because of their genes:

“Three independent genetic studies have found some of the strongest evidence yet that your genes influence your risk of developing lung cancer.

Lung cancer, the most common killer cancer in the world, is largely caused by smoking. Tobacco is thought to be responsible for about 5 million premature deaths every year and smoking is still clearly the largest risk factor. But the new results suggest that, amongst smokers, some people may be as much as 80% more at risk than others thanks to their genes.

People who have never smoked might also have a slightly increased risk of developing lung cancer and similar problems, although the three studies disagree on whether this is actually the case. It is not clear whether the genetic effect occurs independently of smoking, or whether the genes raise the risk of cancer by exacerbating nicotine addiction.”

The suspect area is on chromosome 15, which is apparently linked to the development of cancer in general:

“By scanning the entire genomes of lung-cancer patients and healthy controls, the three research teams all identified a region on chromosome 15 that seems to influence the likelihood of developing cancer. People possessing a certain set of mutations at this genetic location are more likely than others to have the disease.”

Smoking is still considered a significant factor in whether someone develops lung cancer.

I don’t think this is surprising news but it’s good news that scientists are continuing to locate the genes associated with specific diseases.

— DRJ

11 Responses to “Scientists Identify Possible Genetic Link for Lung Cancer”

  1. For more information on lung cancer, check out Cancer.Net. It’s the patient information website of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. All content is vetted by cancer doctors.

    Heather Goethe (c2570c)

  2. I quit smoking nearly two years ago with laser acupuncture. It worked like magic.

    kimsch (2ce939)

  3. Do you think laser acupuncture is better than needle acupuncture or is the primary benefit that it’s less invasive?

    DRJ (a431ca)

  4. I don’t think this is surprising news but it’s good news that scientists are continuing to locate the genes associated with specific diseases.

    Meanwhile, the lawyers and bureaucrats that have hitched their stars to vilifying the tobacco industry (John Edwards, Rob Reiner, etc.) are scrambling for ways to either discredit the study or seek Tobacco Road links its funding.

    L.N. Smithee (e1f2bf)

  5. I think this has been painfully obvious for some time. Some people smoke for 10 years and get lung cancer; others smoke for 40 years and have no significant problems. I read an interview not too long ago with a 115-year-old man who was a regular smoker for, well, close to a century. It would be crazy to believe that’s just the luck of the draw. Of COURSE genetics has a lot to do with it.

    PatHMV (653160)

  6. If you need a crutch, go with what works.
    Some, like Bob Dole, were able to quit cold-turkey. As at AA, 38-yrs detoxed.

    Another Drew (f9dd2c)

  7. Every male in my family has contracted colon cancer between the ages of 53 and 57 for at least four generations. Some were very fit and didn’t smoke, others were on the other end of that spectrum.

    My 75 year old mother has smoked like a fish forever to no ill effect. The women on her side have all lived into their 80s without significant malady.

    The same kind of phenomena holds for my friends’ families from long ago.

    Nobody will ever show me that behavior (short of Evel Knievel idiocy) has a greater impact on our general health than our genes. Yes, it is better to be fit, but Jack LaLanne, for all his 94 year old glory, will end up physically right where I will.

    Ed (215a21)

  8. OFF TOPIC – I finally found how to make your website load properly.

    Edit your hosts file and put in

    127.0.0.1 s17.sitemeter.com
    127.0.0.1 http://www.qoona.com

    I have no idea what those block… probably some tracking stuff. But who cares? It ends the continuous ‘loading page’ thing.

    Kevin (57a31b)

  9. hmm, don’t put in the ‘http://’ part. patterico’s site added that. The rest is good though.

    Kevin (57a31b)

  10. Do you think laser acupuncture is better than needle acupuncture or is the primary benefit that it’s less invasive?

    Comment by DRJ — 4/2/2008 @ 11:11 am

    I’ve never had regular needle acupuncture so I couldn’t tell you. I can say that the non-invasiveness was definitely a plus in choosing this method. I don’t know as I could have a bunch of needles sticking out of me. The laser method seems to have worked just fine. I smoked right up until the appointment time. By the time the session was half over, I gave the tech the pack with 4-5 cigarettes in it and my lighter to throw out. Haven’t had one since. Haven’t had a need. Thoughts, occasionally, but those are fleeting…

    kimsch (2ce939)

  11. This is a very informative and useful article for me because one of my friends sister is suffering
    from Colon cancer.This post is very useful for me because my friends mother is suffering from the
    same. This would help me to tell some important caution about cancer.

    John (46178a)


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