BRCA2 and predisposition to pancreatic and other cancers
Pancreatic adenocarcinoma is a major cause of cancer deaths in the industrialised world. Recent work has focused on the genetics of pancreatic cancer with a goal of finding an early detection marker that might allow for greater rates of survival than are currently possible. The breast cancer 2 gene (BRCA2) is one of numerous genes implicated in familial pancreatic cancer. Carriers of germline mutations of the BRCA2 gene have an increased risk of several cancers, among them pancreatic adenocarcinoma. During pancreatic carcinogenesis, bi-allelic inactivation of BRCA2 occurs as a late event, suggesting that other genetic events must occur before neoplastic cells can tolerate loss of BRCA2.
Key Words: BRCA2; pancreatic cancer; breast cancer; ovarian cancer; neoplastic progression model; Rad51.
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