Researchers from the University of Michigan have recently uncovered a new gene, HMMR, that interacts with the well-known breast cancer gene BRCA1. HMMR is a hyaluronan mediated motility receptor gene that is involved with cell motility. Alternations in this gene cause genetic instability and interfere with cell division, which could be strongly related to the development of cancer. Women under the age of 40 who carry the HMMR variation were 2.7 times more likely to develop breast cancer when compared to women without the variation.

Dr. Laura Rozek, a research fellow at the University of Michigan Medical School stated, “Identifying genes involved in cancer in the general population is important because not all of the causes of breast cancer have been found. Through discoveries such as this, someday we might be able to estimate more precisely a person’s risk of cancer based on their genes.”

Interestingly there are two transcripts of this gene and the shorter transcript is missing exon 4 as can be seen with SynaMap, a tool for identifying exons from mRNAs or ESTs sequences.

To analyse the differences in the distribution of exons between the two variants of HMMR, please follow the instructions below:

  1. Click here to analyse HMMR1.
  2. Click here to analyse HMMR2.
News source: Science Daily