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How does Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome develop into cancer?

  • Researcher: Professor Maurice van Steensel
  • Institution: Universiteit Maastricht
  • Award Amount: £153,409 for 2 years from August 2011
  • Cancer Type: General Cancer Research
How does Birt-Hogg-Dubé syndrome develop into cancer?

Birt-Hogg-Dubé (BHD) syndrome is a rare disorder where people develop non-cancerous growths on their faces and are at risk of developing kidney cancer. Patients are also at risk of developing cysts in their kidneys, liver and lungs. It is known that BHD is caused by alterations in a gene called FLCN but it is unclear how this alteration can cause cysts and cancer. Dr van Steensel believes that formation of the cysts precedes the cancer and he is using his Worldwide Cancer Research grant to investigate how lack of FLCN causes cysts to develop.

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