Roche NimbleGen CGH Arrays Facilitate Cross-Species Study on Colorectal Cancer in Humans and Canines
News Mar 26, 2010
In a recently published study in the journal Genome Research, a team of scientists led by Dr. Shaying Zhao at the University of Georgia have developed a novel cross-species comparative genomics and oncology strategy for cancer driver gene discovery, using microarray technologies from Roche NimbleGen, that differs fundamentally from current approaches which focus on human cancers only.
This study used NimbleGen CGH arrays to pinpoint genes likely responsible for colorectal cancer (CRC) by identifying genomic copy number abnormalities (CNAs) that are common in both canine and human CRC research samples (Genome Research, 2010, 20:341). The results of this study could have significant implications on research to develop future diagnostic assays and treatments for this devastating disease.
Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers affecting humans globally. The National Cancer Institute recently reported CRC as the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in addition to being the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. While early screening and risk factor modification is contributing to the downward trend of mortality rate for this disease, significant research is still needed to identify the genomic cause of this cancer.
In recent years, increasing evidence for the contribution of CNAs to cancer development and progression has been reported. CNAs are most easily detected using microarray-based comparative genomic hybridization (CGH), where entire genomes of healthy and cancer samples are compared in a single experiment. As these changes can be numerous and complex in certain cancers, especially those from advanced stage cancers, it is challenging to determine which CNAs are cancer-causing and which are non-causative changes.
To test the hypothesis that CNAs common in both human and dog CRC are more likely to be the direct cause of CRC, Dr. Zhao’s team used NimbleGen CGH microarrays to first characterize CNAs in human CRC and canine CRC samples.