Researcher demonstrates that DNA impacts cancer risk

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Edwin Wang in his lab. Photo by Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

(Laura Herperger/ Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute) — Lifestyle, or put another way, “bad habits,” is one of the textbook explanations for why some people are at higher risk for cancer.

We often hear that smoking increases our risk of developing lung cancer or that a high-fat diet increases our risk of developing bowel cancer, but not all smokers get lung cancer and not all people who eat cheeseburgers get bowel cancer. Other factors must be at play.

New research from University of Calgary scientist Dr. Edwin Wang, PhD, a professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Cumming School of Medicine, is shedding light on those other factors.

Wang has discovered seven DNA fingerprints or patterns that define cancer risk. The research is published in Science Advances. (…)

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