Researchers find possible cancer risk factors

Nov 29, 2010

Researchers are looking for ways to identify risk factors for ovarian cancer

An international study may be able to shed light on potential risk factors for ovarian cancer. The research consisted of looking at a woman's genes and genetic changes.

The team identified four chromosome locations with genetic changes that could help determine a woman's risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Mayo Clinic genetic epidemiologist and lead author Dr. Ellen Goode says the research revealed some surprising results on a few chromosomes.

"While examining the usual suspects in a region on chromosome 8, we found that SNPs associated with ovarian cancer risk were located quite a distance away from those associated with risk of other cancers, which suggest that they may act through a different mechanism," says Goode.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that all women are at some risk for developing ovarian cancer, the risk becomes heightened after the age of 40.

Researchers still aren't sure what exactly causes ovarian cancer. However, the CDC says that using birth control pills for more than five years may lower a woman's chance of being diagnosed with the disease.

Even once in remission, a person may find themselves paying higher health and life insurance premiums because of the higher fatality and medical risk associated with the condition.

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