Normal Limits

"Chance is the very guide of life"

"In practical medicine the facts are far too few for them to enter into the calculus of probabilities... in applied medicine we are always concerned with the individual" -- S. D. Poisson

October 29, 2005

Science - Recurrent Fusion of TMPRSS2 and ETS Transcription Factor Genes in Prostate Cancer (Tomlins et al 2005)

In this week's journal Science, by Dr. Tomlins et al:
We used a bioinformatics approach to discover candidate oncogenic chromosomal aberrations on the basis of outlier gene expression.

We identified recurrent gene fusions of the 5' untranslated region of TMPRSS2 to ERG or ETV1 in prostate cancer tissues with outlier expression.

By using fluorescence in situ hybridization, we demonstrated that 23 of 29 prostate cancer samples harbor rearrangements in ERG or ETV1. Cell line experiments suggest that the androgen-responsive promoter elements of TMPRSS2 mediate the overexpression of ETS family members in prostate cancer.

This is a beautiful piece of computational biology with significant clinical implications. More review of the methods and of the ETS transcription factor family (which I encountered in grad school) to follow...

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