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An excess of the Rsf-1 gene may play an important role in the development of ovarian cancer, based on an analysis of tissue from 7 ovarian cancer samples. Using a digital karyotyping technique to identify "subchromosomal alterations," the researchers observed an overproduction of the Rsf-1 gene located on chromosome 11 in 13.2% of the most aggressive forms of ovarian cancer. These results were not seen in any of the low-grade ovarian cancers.
Because this was the first study to identify this genetic alteration, the new finding may lead to the development of a drug to block the activity of Rsf-1 and therefore stop the cancerous cell growth, concluded senior researcher Tian-Li Wang, PhD, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (September 27, 2005).