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Other highlights in the Dec. 6 JNCI

enter in Seattle, and colleagues assessed the expression of p27kip1 and cyclin E in tumor tissue from 2,123 patients with primary breast cancer enrolled in the Southwest Oncology Group/Intergroup Trial S9313. They found that low expression of p27kip1 was associated with worse overall and disease-free survival in women treated with the chemotherapy drugs adriamycin and cyclophosphamide. Patients with low p27kip1 expression and steroid receptor-positive tumors had poor survival, but patients with steroid receptor-negative tumors did not. No association was found between cyclin E expression and disease-free or overall survival.

Contact: Kristen Woodward, 206-667-5095, kwoorwar@fhcrc.org


BRAF and CIMP Linked to Colon Cancer In Smokers

Some colon tumors in smokers are linked to mutations in a specific gene and abnormal chemical modification of DNA, and smoking may activate these molecular changes, according to a new study.

Wade S. Samowitz, M.D., of the University of Utah Health Sciences Center in Salt Lake City, and colleagues examined a mutation in a gene called BRAF and an increase in the methylation of DNA at specific sites identified as a phenotype, called CIMP, in 1,315 colon cancer patients and 2,392 controls. All of the participants were interviewed about their smoking history and background, and tumors were assessed for CIMP levels and BRAF mutations.

The authors found that heavy smoking was associated with an increased risk of colon cancer that was classified as having high CIMP levels and BRAF mutations. "Relatively weak previously identified associations between smoking and colon cancer may be attributed to the relatively strong association of smoking with the small subset of colon cancers that have a CIMP high or BRAF-mutated status," the authors write.

Contact: Christopher Nelson, 801-581-7387, Christ
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Contact: Andrea Widener
jncimedia@oxfordjournals.org
301-841-1286
Journal of the National Cancer Institute
5-Dec-2006


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