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A national team of researchers led by Mayo Clinic has found that patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) are more likely to have similar DNA changes or variants in up to six genes, compared to people who do not have the cancer.
The findings, presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, are an independent validation of an earlier European study that found a link to seven different gene variants. Six were replicated in the Mayo Clinic study.
Together, the two studies demonstrate a genetic basis for the development of CLL, the most common adult leukemia in the United States, says the study's lead investigator, statistical geneticist Susan Slager, Ph.D., an associate professor of biostatistics at Mayo Clinic.