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Researchers identify new gene associated with breast cancer

that expressed HER2/neu also over-expressed C35. There were no cases that were positive for HER2/neu and negative for C35.

They found that C35 accumulates within the core of tumor cells. As the cells are killed, the C35 is released from the dying cell through internal membranes into surrounding tissue. Researchers are working to develop a diagnostic test to detect the presence of C35 protein or antibodies to that protein in a patient's blood and to develop potential treatments.

Researchers believe that traditional treatment methods alone will not be effective against C35 positive breast cancer, much in the same way that they are not effective against HER2/neu positive breast cancer. "We believe that future treatment of C35 positive breast cancer will be a two-pronged approach," said Dr. Sahasrabudhe. "It may entail an agent targeting C35, together with standard radio- or chemotherapy to induce further tumor cell death. A vaccine therapy to prevent the growth of C35-expressing tumor cells might also be a treatment approach."

Breast cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer-related death in women. According to the American Cancer Society, in 2003 more than 266,000 women and 1,300 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer and more than 39,000 women and 400 men will die from the disease.


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Contact: Aimee Frank
202-955-6222
American Association for Cancer Research
8-Apr-2003


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