Classifying Cervical Cancer: A Genomic and Molecular Approach
This study by the Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network (Nature, 2017) sought to characterize endometrial cancers using molecular and genomic information. This, to date, is the largest genomic study of cervical cancer and involved 303 investigators.
Basic Science – Genomic Study
228 primary cervical cancers were identified. Novel genes such as SHKBP1, ERBB3, CASP8, HLA-A, and TGFBR2 were identified. In addition, the authors discovered potential targets for newer therapies, including drugs such as lapatinib (already in use against breast cancer). Also of note, the important role of HPV in cervical cancer was again demonstrated, with the integration of HPV in all HPV18 cases and 76% of HPV16 cases. A unique set of endometrial-like cervical cancers were identified. These were almost exclusively HPV-negative. These results are critical for the future development of cervical cancer therapies.
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