Gene Variant Associated with Peripheral Neuropathy in Prostate Cancer

Docetaxel-induced peripheral neuropathy found in castrate-resistant metastatic prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer patients with a variation of the VAC14 gene were found to be more susceptible to peripheral neuropathy when treated with taxane docetaxel, a recent study found.

The study was published in the online journal Clinical Cancer Research. Researchers examined the DNA of 623 castrate-resistant metastatic prostate cancer patients who participated in a randomized phase 3 clinical trial that used docetaxel in the treatment regimen.

Of the 623 patients, 50 (8.1%) of patients experienced debilitating peripheral neuropathy. During the analysis, the patients’ DNA was examined for single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with docetaxel induced peripheral neuropathy.

The results of the study showed that a variation in VAC14 gene was highly associated with the incidence of docetaxel-induced peripheral neuropathy.

“The genetic variant of VAC14 identified in this study could be useful for understanding the mechanism of docetaxel-induced neuropathy and may be informative for avoiding docetaxel treatment in patients at elevated neuropathy risk,” said researcher Howard McLeod, PharmD. “This also offers new drug development strategies to improve the outcomes for cancer patients.”