The authors could not validate the performance of the two-gene predictor with their cohort of samples nor could they develop a model with good predictive accuracy using the available independent microarray datasets. They conclude that treatment-response predictive models have poor performance with the small sample sizes of patients and the informative genes currently available.
In an editorial, Richard Simon, D.Sc., of the National Cancer Institute, provides possible explanations for the inconsistencies in the results of the two studies and makes recommendations about how these types of studies could be improved.
Study Identifies Gene That May Suppress Renal Tumors
A new study has found evidence that the gene responsible for Birt-Hogg-Dub (BHD) syndrome, a genetic disease characterized by the development of benign lesions in hair follicles and pulmonary cysts, may be a tumor suppressor gene that predisposes a person to renal tumors when both copies of the gene are inactivated.
BHD syndrome is caused by a mutation in at least one copy of the BHD gene. People with BHD syndrome were found to have a sevenfold higher risk of renal cancer compared with the general population. Cathy D. Vocke, Ph.D., of the National Cancer Institute, and colleagues hypothesized that BHD may also be a tumor suppressor gene. They examined the BHD gene in 77 renal tumors from 12 patients with germline BHD mutations. They found evidence that most tumors from these patients had a mutation in their second copy of the BHD gene. They conclude that their results support a role for BHD as a tumor suppressor