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Women who have a family history of ovarian cysts may benefit from cancer testing, as a new study has found that two genetic variations that can be passed through generations may be responsible for development of the deadly disease.
Following genetic testing of ovarian cancer cells, researchers from Johns Hopkins University found several uncommon genes that are positively associated with the disease. However, the correlation for two of these genes was much stronger.
Nicholas Popadopoulos, who led the investigation, said that the findings could help doctors identify patients who are at risk, and provide a stronger basis for recommending cancer testing.
"They may provide opportunities for developing new biomarkers and therapies that target those genes," he said. "These genes may play a significant role in this type of cancer."
He added that the new understanding of some of the genetic factors may help scientists develop more effective treatments for individuals who have already developed the disease.
Ovarian cancer has one of the poorest survival rates of most cancer that affect women because it is difficult to detect. Doctors generally don't discover it until the cancer has progressed to a stage that is untreatable.
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