ISLAMABAD: Deadly stomach and breast cancers that are genetically inherited could be treated or even prevented with existing drugs identified by New Zealand cancer researchers.
Cancer genetics researchers at Otago University said that the key genetic mutation underlying familial stomach and lobular breast cancers also opened them to attack through drug therapies targeting cellular mechanisms, Xinhua news agency reported.
Currently, the lack of treatments meant surgical removal was often used as a preventive measure in people identified as carrying the mutated gene that causes the cancers.
Study leader Parry Guilford said the team used genomic screening to search for vulnerabilities in the cancer cells that lack the tumour-suppressor protein, E-cadherin, which was often lost because of a genetic mutation.
The researchers screened selected drug classes known to interfere with these proteins, and found that the E-cadherin-lacking cells proved highly sensitive to many of the compounds while their normal counterparts did not.