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Study Tracks Cancer Screening Roles for Polygenic Risk Scores in UK

An Institute of Cancer Research- and UK National Health Service-led team reporting in Lancet Oncology explores polygenic risk score (PRS) utility for eight cancer types, bringing in available age-stratified cancer incidence profiles collected in the UK between 2016 and 2018. In particular, the investigators consider the performance of various PRS models and SNP collections, as well as potential benefits or risks of stratifying breast, prostate, colorectal, pancreatic, ovarian, kidney, lung, and testicular cancer screening strategies with PRS profiles. By estimating authentic cancer cases that would be found within high-risk PRS groups, the authors suggest that the PRS-stratified screening approach has the potential for preventing more cancer deaths than unstratified screening strategies when it came to breast cancers in 40- to 49-year-olds, colorectal cancers occurring in 50- to 59-year-olds, and prostate cancers in 60- to 69-year-olds. "[O]ur modeling suggests modest potential efficiency gain in cancer case detection and deaths averted for hypothetical new PRS-stratified screening programmes for breast, prostate, and colorectal cancer," they report, cautioning that "[r]estriction of screening to high-risk quantiles means many or most incident cancers will arise in those assigned as being low-risk."

The Scan

ChatGPT Does As Well As Humans Answering Genetics Questions, Study Finds

Researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics had ChatGPT answer genetics-related questions, finding it was about 68 percent accurate, but sometimes gave different answers to the same question.

Sequencing Analysis Examines Gene Regulatory Networks of Honeybee Soldier, Forager Brains

Researchers in Nature Ecology & Evolution find gene regulatory network differences between soldiers and foragers, suggesting bees can take on either role.

Analysis of Ashkenazi Jewish Cohort Uncovers New Genetic Loci Linked to Alzheimer's Disease

The study in Alzheimer's & Dementia highlighted known genes, but also novel ones with biological ties to Alzheimer's disease.

Tara Pacific Expedition Project Team Finds High Diversity Within Coral Reef Microbiome

In papers appearing in Nature Communications and elsewhere, the team reports on findings from the two-year excursion examining coral reefs.