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New study takes fight to cancer.

A NEW study which aims to uncover inherent cancer-causing genes was unveiled at a national cancer conference in the city centre.

To date, researchers have only identified a small number of these genes, including BRCA1 and BRCA2.

However while these have large individual effects, together they account for just 20 per cent of the risk of the disease.

Scientists are now turning to cutting edge technology which detects differences between healthy and cancerous cells, and the team will identify any human genes that contribute more than a two per cent inherited risk.

During the National Cancer Research Institute conference, at the International Convention Centre, delegates heard how this could provide a new insight into what causes breast cancer.

Prof Bruce Ponder, director of the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Research Institute, said: "At the moment, we can test for just a few faulty genes, so only a minority of women with a family history of breast cancer are able to find out their inherited risk.

"Hopefully, in time, this study will lead to tests for many more such genes, enabling a larger proportion of women in this situation to find out their risk."
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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Oct 6, 2005
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