New Mesothelioma Gene Discovered: Educational Video Available

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation announced today that the educational video covering the BAP1 gene, which is the first gene discovered in mesothelioma, is now available on the organization’s website.

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If the gene is found to be defective, researchers will be looking for ways to turn it off and avoid the malignancy entirely

Alexandria, VA (PRWEB) April 26, 2013

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (Meso Foundation) announced today that the educational video covering the discovery of the new BAP1 gene in mesothelioma is now available for viewing on the organization’s website.

BAP1 is the first gene discovered in mesothelioma and researchers have just begun embarking on trials to better understand its incidence.

In germ line mutations (inherited mutations), this gene is thought to be extremely rare but has been found to have associations with uveal melanoma (melanoma of the eye), renal cell carcinoma (kidney cancer) and an unpigmented nevi (a skin lesion without color). It is thought that approximately 25% of mesothelioma patients will have somatic mutations (those that occur spontaneously) of this gene.

According to the executive director of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation, Mary Hesdorffer, Nurse Practitioner, this gene has much potential for mesothelioma patients.

“Currently, the research goal of the BAP1 gene is for prevention and early detection of mesothelioma,” says Ms. Hesdorffer.

According to her, this means that, for example, asbestos exposed individuals who carry the gene can be studied to determine if a cancer signal can be picked up before the development of mesothelioma.

“The idea is that down the line, if you have a germ line mutation, you and your immediate family will be screened for cancers associated with this gene in the hope of picking up an early malignancy. If the gene is found to be defective, researchers will be looking for ways to turn it off and avoid the malignancy entirely," added Ms. Hesdorffer.

The Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation had an entire session devoted to the BAP1 gene at the 2013 Symposium.

Mesothelioma is a malignant tumor of the lining of the lung, abdomen, or heart known to be caused by exposure to asbestos. Medical experts consider it one of the most aggressive and deadly of all cancers. Approximately 3,000 Americans are diagnosed with mesothelioma every year and an estimated one-third were exposed while serving in the Navy or working in Navy shipyards.

ABOUT THE MESOTHELIOMA APPLIED RESEARCH FOUNDATION
The Meso Foundation is the only 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating mesothelioma and easing the suffering caused by it. The Meso Foundation actively seeks philanthropic support to fund peer-reviewed mesothelioma research; provide patient support services and education; and advocate Congress for increased federal funding for mesothelioma research. The Meso Foundation is the only non-government funder of peer reviewed scientific research to establish more effective treatments for mesothelioma and, ultimately, a cure for this rare, but extremely aggressive, cancer. To date, the Foundation has awarded over $8.2 million to research.

More information is available at http://www.curemeso.org.