Genetic Profiles of Brain Metastases Differ from those of Primary Tumors

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October 1, 2015

A new study reveals that while brain metastases share some genetic characteristics with their primary tumors, they also carry unique genetic mutations. The study also reports that brain metastases may continue to evolve after leaving the primary tumor site.

The study was led by Priscilla Brastianos, MD, director of the Brain Metastasis Program at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Cancer Center. These findings may influence treatment decisions and potential outcomes for patients with brain metastases, allowing medical teams to sequence both primary and metastatic tumors and pinpoint sensitivities to targeted therapy drugs.

Brastianos’ team conducted the study with a whole-exome gene sequencing on three tissue samples - primary tumor, brain metastasis and normal tissue - from each of 86 patients with lung, breast or kidney cancers.

Click here to read the full study.