Gene test could pinpoint cancer risk

July 18, 1997

Leeds University researchers are analysing a gene present in some bowel cancer patients that appears to be linked to a lower chance of survival. Quick identification of the gene following cancer surgery could boost survival rates, they believe. The research, led by Alex Markham of Leeds University's molecular medicine unit, and Pierre Guillou of the professorial surgical unit at St James's Hospital, will be funded by Zeneca Diagnostics for at least three years. The company hopes to develop a post-surgery test which will determine whether colonic and rectal cancer patients have the modified REG gene, believed to be present in about half the 40,000 new cases each year.

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