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31-03-2016 | Article

In brief: Genomic clue to ethnic disparities in clear cell RCC survival

medwireNews: The poorer survival outcomes for African–American versus White patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma (RCC) could be explained by inherent differences in tumour genomics, indicate findings published in JAMA Oncology.

The rate of von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) mutations was significantly reduced in the 29 African–American patients with clear cell RCC versus their 544 White counterparts, and was accompanied by a decreased upregulation of hypoxia-inducible factor- and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-associated pathways in the former group.

Tumours from African–American patients were also enriched for the ccB molecular subtype that is associated with worse prognosis.

Researcher William Kim (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA) and co-workers conclude: “These genomic differences would predict decreased responsiveness to VEGF-targeted therapy and are a biologically plausible contributing factor to the worse survival of African American patients with [clear cell RCC], even in the targeted therapy era.”

By Shreeya Nanda

medwireNews is an independent medical news service provided by Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2016