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Korea Joins ICGC with Asian Breast Cancer Study

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The International Cancer Genome Consortium today said that several Korean institutions have started a new effort to study breast cancer genomics in Asian women and to provide data from the project to the ICGC.

Launched by Korea's National Center for Cancer Genomics, the project will be led by researchers at Hanyang University and collaborators at Seoul National University, Asian Medical Center, and Gachon University of Medicine and Science.

Because there are "significant genomic and lifestyle differences between Caucasian and Asian populations," ICGC said, the genomic data from breast cancer patients in Asia will be compared to similar ICGC projects in the UK, France, and the US.

"We believe that genomic data from Asian cancer patients will contribute to the current ICGC breast cancer project both scientifically and clinically," Hyung-Lae Kim, director general of The National Project for Personalized Genomic Medicine, said in a statement.

ICGC also said that its most recent major data release includes new data from several new initiatives including France's Liver Cancer project; Germany's Pediatric Brain Cancer project; the UK's Myelodysplastic Syndrome project; and updates from cancer studies in Australia, Canada, and Japan involving breast, liver, and pancreatic cancers.

Each of the ICGC member projects is conducting comprehensive, high-resolution analysis of a range of genomic changes in at least one type or sub-type of cancer, and the studies adhere to common standards of data collection and analysis.

"It's exciting to see how these large-scale cancer genome datasets and the technology being advanced by the ICGC are setting the stage for rapidly bringing more precise diagnostic tests to the clinical management of patients," added Tom Hudson, president and scientific director of the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research and a founder of the ICGC.

As of this month, the consortium said it has received commitments from funding bodies in Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America for 47 project teams to study more than 18,000 tumor genomes.