Context-dependent cancer risk

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A new study in mice shows that genetic variants underlying a previously mapped lung cancer susceptibility locus can have opposing effects on cancer risk depending on whether an oncogenic somatic mutation at the same locus subsequently arises in cis or in trans. These findings illustrate the complex interplay between genetic background and somatic events in contributing to cancer risk.

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Figure 1: Illustration of the potential impact of differences in allele frequency at KRAS2 on disease association studies.

Kim Caesar

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Hunter, K. Context-dependent cancer risk. Nat Genet 38, 864–865 (2006) doi:10.1038/ng0806-864

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