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This Week in BMC Cancer: Jul 30, 2012


In BMC Cancer this week, researchers in Japan report that overexpression of the cell cycle regulator CDCA3 in patients with oral cancer can lead to progression of the disease through enhanced cell proliferation. The researchers analyzed CDCA3 mRNA and protein expression in oral cancer cell lines and tumor samples, and found that expression was frequently upregulated in both the cell lines and tumors. "Among the clinical variables analyzed, the CDCA3 expression status was closely related to tumor size," the authors write. "In addition, suppression of CDCA3 expression with shRNA significantly inhibited cellular proliferation compared with the control cells by arresting cell-cycle progression at the G1 phase."

Also in BMC Cancer this week, researchers in Germany report on the association between AB0 blood group and prognosis in pancreatic cancer patients. "Although blood group 0 is associated with a reduced risk of pancreatic cancer, little is known about the role of AB0 blood group antigens in disease progression," the team writes. For this study, the researchers analyzed data from 627 patients who had undergone resection for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma and found that having blood group 0 was associated with a favorable impact on survival. "AB0 blood group status is associated independently with the prognosis of patients with resected pancreatic cancer," the authors add.

Finally in BMC Cancer this week, researchers in China report that the presence of inflammatory cells expressing the S100A9 protein in the tumor tissues of patients with gastric cancer correlates with early-stage disease and better prognosis. Using immunohistochemistry, the researchers analyzed S100A9 expression in gastric tissue samples from 177 gastric cancer patients and found that it was specifically expressed by inflammatory cells like macrophages and neutrophils in the cancer tissues. Further analysis showed a significant association between a high S100A9 cell count and early-stage gastric cancer and that a high S100A9-positive cell count was negatively correlated with lymph node metastasis and tumor invasion. "S100A9 was identified as an independent prognostic predictor of overall survival of patients with gastric cancer," the authors write. "Patients with high S100A9 cell count were with favorable prognosis."

The Scan

Study Tracks Responses in Patients Pursuing Polygenic Risk Score Profiling

Using interviews, researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics qualitatively assess individuals' motivations for, and experiences with, direct-to-consumer polygenic risk score testing.

EHR Quality Improvement Study Detects Demographic-Related Deficiencies in Cancer Family History Data

In a retrospective analysis in JAMA Network Open, researchers find that sex, ethnicity, language, and other features coincide with the quality of cancer family history information in a patient's record.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Linked to Gut Microbiome Community Structure Gradient in Meta-Analysis

Bringing together data from prior studies, researchers in Genome Biology track down microbial taxa and a population structure gradient with ties to ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease.

Ancient Greek Army Ancestry Highlights Mercenary Role in Historical Migrations

By profiling genomic patterns in 5th century samples from in and around Himera, researchers saw diverse ancestry in Greek army representatives in the region, as they report in PNAS.