New Research to Help Identify High Cancer Risk Families

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Scientists in the US have reportedly discovered a way to identify families at a high risk of developing colorectal cancer.

A study by UT Southwestern Medical Center and Parkland Memorial Hospital developed the genetic screening program for families thought to be at risk of contracting the illness, which is deadly but very preventable.

The team screened the tumours of colorectal cancer patients younger than 70, and uterine cancer patients younger than 55 to test for a genetic cancer predisposition. When this was found, family members were also screened for the disease, resulting in at least 11 patients being diagnosed with Lynch disease.

“If we can bring in family members of those who have been diagnosed, we have a chance to catch their colon cancer early and even prevent it,” said Dr. Samir Gupta, assistant professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern and head of the high-risk colorectal cancer clinic started at Parkland this year.

Research in this area is still continuing.

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