May 26, 2024

Down syndrome gene protects against cancer

Prevents development of solid cancerous tumours
For years doctors
have known that people with Down’s syndrome have a lower risk of some
cancers, except for leukaemia. Now a study in Nature suggests
that a single gene on their extra chromosome provides some extra protection for them.
Tests on mice appear to show that the gene prevents the development of solid
cancerous tumours. This finding could lead to news ways to treat
cancers. Writing in the journal, the researchers, led by Dr Sandra
Ryeom, said:
“It is, perhaps, inspiring that the Down’s syndrome population provides
us with new insight into mechanisms that regulate cancer growth and, by
so doing, identifies potential targets for tumour prevention and
therapy.” ~ BBC, May 20

Down syndrome

One thought on “Down syndrome gene protects against cancer

  1. This is interesting. I was just thinking about genetic disorders/mutations and how they’re present in populations because some confer selective advantage. I was thinking what kind of advantge could Down Sydnrome confer? Lo and behold, here’s the answer!

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