A mutated gene has been found in 1/3 patients with the most common form of renal cancer. This finding will help researchers understand how kidney cancer develops and in future it might lead to new treatments and earlier diagnosis.
Every individual is born with a gene called PBRM1. However in some people this gene might get damaged leading to the development of cancer. 40% cases of renal cancer presented with a mutated PBRM1 gene. 20 years ago it was known that the main gene involved, the tumor suppressor VHL, is mutated in 8 out of 10 patients. Scientists now believe that these two genes together are implicated in majority of kidney cancers.
Renal cancer is the 7th most common cancer in men and the 9th in women. Therefore this new discovery will provide a new insight for future therapeutic measures.