They sequenced the germline DNA of 743 black men diagnosed with prostate cancer at age 62 or younger. It is the DNA contained in the sperm cells of men, which means that it contains genetic changes that can be passed on to the child.

The researchers identified 26 variants in 14 genes that could cause the disease among the 30 men, about 4% of the patients studied.

“We completed sequencing at Duke, and our results revealed that men with certain genetic variants are more likely to have a close relative diagnosed with cancer, have higher prostate-specific antigen at diagnosis, and have more severe events,” Cooney said. .


“To learn more about the susceptibility of black men to developing prostate cancer, we need to take a closer look at genetic associations,” Cooney said. “This could potentially reduce health disparities.”

Poor outcomes among black men diagnosed with prostate cancer include both biological and social factors, such as health care utilization. Data from a previous study show that genetic makeup accounts for 40% of all prostate cancer cases.

“If men know there’s a family history of cancer, it’s important to talk to a doctor and consider genetic testing. If they carry the mutation, they’re encouraged to get cancer screenings earlier and more often,” Cooney said.

Additional authors of the study include Matthew Trendowski, Christopher Sample, Tara Baird, Azita Sadeghpour, David Moon, Julie Rutherbus, and Jennifer Bibb-Dimmer.

The study received funding from the Department of Defense (W81XWH-16-1-0713) and the National Institutes of Health (3T32 HG008955-04S1).

Source: Eurekalert

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