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J Bras Pneumol. 2006 Jan-Feb;32(1):56-65.

Molecular markers in lung cancer: prognostic role and relationship to smoking.

[Article in English, Portuguese]

Author information

1
Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, School of Medicine, Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. rlmd.hucff@bol.com.br

Abstract

Epidemiological studies have demonstrated a causal relationship between smoking and lung cancer. Although most lung cancer cases are linked to smoking, only a minority of heavy smokers develop lung cancer, leading to the notion that genetic factors affect individual susceptibility. The principal molecular changes in lung cancer are seen in tumor suppressor genes, proto-oncogenes, growth factors, telomerase activity, and methylation status of promoters. Well-known agents include angiogenesis-stimulating factors (such as vascular endothelial growth factor), as well as factors related to tumor cell proliferation and apoptosis (epidermal growth factor receptor, p53, K-ras, retinoblastoma and BCL-2). Several of these genetic factors have already been investigated, but no single parameter has yet presented sufficient selectivity regarding prognostic value or therapeutic efficacy. Treatment strategies to cure lung cancer should focus on these early genetic lesions in order to promote their repair or to eliminate these lung cancer cells.

PMID:
17273570
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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