Inherited Gene Changes and Prostate Cancer

The exact cause of prostate cancer is unknown. But, according to the American Cancer Society (ACS), we do know that about 5 percent to 10 percent of all prostate cancer cases can be linked to inherited genetic mutations. This means some men are born with a greater risk for developing prostate cancer in their lifetime than others. As the specialists at Regional Cancer Care Associates continue to learn more about prostate cancer, they’re able to offer more hope to men who are fighting this disease.

How Gene Mutations Affect Prostate Cancer

There are two types of gene changes: ones that are inherited and ones that are acquired over the course of a person’s life. If a certain gene has a certain mutation, it can cause cells to behave abnormally, which could potentially lead to prostate cancer. In order to figure out whether a person has an inherited gene change or an acquired one, genetic testing may be required. Understanding genes and how they affect prostate cancer can help researchers, doctors and patients move forward with better treatment plans.

Types of Inherited Gene Changes for Prostate Cancer

Inherited gene changes are passed from parent to child. Doctors have been able to identify four different types of inherited gene changes that may cause prostate cancer, but there is believed to be more. When a mutation is present, these genes can’t do their jobs correctly.

Genes that have known links to prostate cancer, according to the ACS, include:

  • RNASEL – Formerly known as HPC1, RNASEL is supposed to help cells die when something goes wrong.
  • BRCA1 and BRCA2 – These genes fix mistakes in a cell’s DNA so that it can function normally.
  • DNA Mismatch Repair Genes – These genes are responsible for fixing mistakes that occur during the cell division process.
  • HOXB13 – HOXB13 plays an important role in the development of the prostate gland. Mutations in this gene are rare but can cause early-onset prostate cancer.

Prostate Cancer Treatment

No matter what a patient’s prostate cancer is caused by, specialists at Regional Cancer Care Associates are dedicated to providing the best treatment possible. If you have prostate cancer, be sure to talk to your doctor about inherited gene changes. To make an appointment at RCCA, contact the office nearest you today.