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Illumina Technology Enables Findings of COGS

Published: Tuesday, May 28, 2013
Last Updated: Tuesday, May 28, 2013
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Custom iSelect® genotyping array designed in collaboration with consortia to advance understanding of cancer.

Illumina, Inc. has announced that its iCOGS custom array was used to identify genetic variants related to breast, ovary and prostate cancer as part of the Collaborative Oncological Gene-Environment Study (COGS), the results of which were published in Nature Genetics and other leading journals.

Developed in collaboration with four large consortia involved in the study, the iCOGS array enables significant advances in understanding the genetic basis of cancer.

Specifically, the iCOGS array identifies single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) across selected regions of DNA associated with cancer.

Its 200,000 SNPs were drawn from previous genome-wide association studies of the different cancer types and subtypes; associations with disease survival or other traits that are associated with risk of cancer; and functional candidates. The technology was used to test more than 200,000 individuals participating in the COGS.

“This groundbreaking study demonstrates how genomic technology is advancing cancer research,” said Jay Flatley, Illumina’s President and Chief Executive Officer.

Flatley continued, “We applaud the efforts of the consortia, and are pleased the iCOGS array played a role in enabling this research that ultimately will help patients.”

The COGS findings include a striking increase in the number of genetic associations for breast, ovarian and prostate cancer - nearly doubling the number of known susceptibility regions.

The findings also provide insights into the differences between subtypes of cancer, including those revealed from comparisons of Estrogen Receptor+ and Estrogen Receptor- breast cancers, as well as the pathways and mechanisms involved in susceptibility to these common cancers.

David Bentley, Vice President and Chief Scientist at Illumina added, “The partnership of the consortia and their work with us unified an enormous depth of knowledge to create a single, specialized array for application to the entire study cohort. Ultimately, we believe the results of the COGS have significant implications in the understanding and management of cancer.”

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