Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Gene Variations Point To Why Lung Cancer Drugs Work Better In Japanese Vs. US Patients

Date:
June 4, 2007
Source:
University of Michigan Health System
Summary:
Recent clinical trials revealed that Japanese lung cancer patients survived longer and had a higher rate of side effects than US patients taking the same two drugs, paclitaxel and carboplatin. Now a new study uncovers genetic differences that may explain why.

Last year, a groundbreaking international project found that a group of Japanese patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer survived longer --and had a higher rate of side effects -- than U.S. patients with the same diagnosis,.when both groups were given two well-known drugs for the disease.

Related Articles


Now, a follow-up study suggests the reasons appear to lie in subtle variations in certain genes that govern how the body metabolizes chemotherapy drugs. David Gandara, M.D., a University of California, Davis researcher who led the recent Southwest Oncology Group study, presented the results Saturday, June 2, at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting.

The discovery that Japanese and U.S. patients, matched in age, gender and other respects, had differences in key metabolism-related genes is the latest result from a seven-year collaboration between the Southwest Oncology Group and two clinical trials groups in Japan. Gandara, who leads lung cancer trial efforts for the Southwest Oncology Group, is director of clinical research at the University of California, Davis, Cancer Center. The Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) is the largest federally funded U.S. cancer trials network.

The recent SWOG study breaks new ground by exploring the possible role of ethnic patterns in the emerging science of pharmacogenomics, which promises to tailor drug regimens to a patient's genetic profile. "Nobody else in the world has ever done this, with a common arm looking at genetic differences among ethnic groups," Gandara says.

Researchers looked at DNA from 156 patients who received the chemotherapy drugs paclitaxel and carboplatin in a SWOG clinical trial and one conducted by the Japan Multicenter Trial Organization. In the trials, half the Japanese patients survived one year, while slightly more than one-third of U.S. patients did. The Japanese patients as a group survived longer despite the fact that a significant number of them had to be given a lower dose of paclitaxel and for a shorter time than the U.S. patients because of toxicity. The U.S. group was predominantly Caucasian; 2 percent were Asian-Americans.

To find clues to the differences, the scientists examined six genes in DNA samples from the patients. They found differences in four. In patients with certain variations in the CYP3A4 gene, it took 2.75 times longer for their lung cancer to progress than in patients without the variations. A variation in another gene, ERCC2, appeared to interfere with how well patients responded to treatment.

The differences in outcomes corresponded with the patients' genetic makeup, rather than their ethnicity per se, since. some individuals in each group possessed genetic variations not typical of their group. Thus, the study suggests therapies in the future need to be tailored to each individual based on analysis of his or her genetic makeup, not simply ethnicity.

The relatively small number of patients makes the results of the study far from conclusive: Gandara calls the study "hypothesis-generating." Next, he and other SWOG scientists are seeking funding to learn what genes may explain why Japanese and U.S. patients respond differently to EGFR inhibitors such as erlotinib, a relatively new targeted therapy that is another important class of drugs for lung cancer.

Institutions involved in the study include the Southwest Oncology Group (in addition to Gandara, members John Crowley, James Moon, Stephen K. Williamson, M.D., and Philip. C. Mack); the University of California, Davis, Cancer Center; the Japan Multinational Trial Organization; the University of Kansas, and the University of North Carolina.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Michigan Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Michigan Health System. "Gene Variations Point To Why Lung Cancer Drugs Work Better In Japanese Vs. US Patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 June 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070603215415.htm>.
University of Michigan Health System. (2007, June 4). Gene Variations Point To Why Lung Cancer Drugs Work Better In Japanese Vs. US Patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070603215415.htm
University of Michigan Health System. "Gene Variations Point To Why Lung Cancer Drugs Work Better In Japanese Vs. US Patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/06/070603215415.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins