Gene tests could help target the men at risk from prostate cancer

By Rebecca Smith

Daily Telegraph Monday 15th September 2014

Genetic tests could identify men with up to 100 genes that together can increase their risk of prostate cancer sixfold, scientists have said.

One percent of men carry a combination of the genes that put them at this risk, while 10 per cent of men carry a lower combination of the genes which put them at a threefold risk.

The findings could lead to targeted genetic testing of men to identify those at higher risk so they can be monitored more closely, experts said.

Scientists discovered 23 new genetic variations that raise the risk of prostate cancer, bringing the total to 100. Another research project will establish if it is feasible to carry out routine genetic screening in the general population.

In the new research, scientists from the Institute of Cancer Research; the University of Cambridge; and the University of Southern California examined the genetic information of 87,040 men from all over the World: a total of 43,303 men with prostate cancer and 43,737 controls from European, African, Japanese and Latino heritage.

They identified 16 new genetic markers linked to prostate cancer risk in European men and 7 new markers in men of mixed heritage.

The findings have been published in the journal Nature Genetics.