First-of-its-Kind Study Looks at Link Between Genes and Prostate Cancer

In the United States, one in nine men will get prostate cancer and more than 4 million men are currently living with the disease. Researchers from the University of Washington School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins University are collaborating on a first-of-its-kind long-term observational study to learn how genetic differences can affect patient outcomes. The new study is dubbed PROMISE (Prostate Cancer Registry of Outcomes and Germline Mutations for Improved Survival and Treatment Effectiveness). This research will examine how particular genetic profiles can influence the susceptibility of men to prostate cancer, impact the effectiveness of existing treatments, improve guidance for existing and new treatment options, and suggest precise areas to explore for new discoveries.

While genetic information has contributed to advances in treatment of diseases such as breast cancer, it has not been widely used in prostate cancer. The PROMISE study will examine how genetic profiles can influence the susceptibility of men to prostate cancer, improve existing treatment options, and lead to important new discoveries and therapies.
PROMISE researchers are seeking prostate cancer patients nationwide. Participating in the study is free. Participants continue with their current healthcare provider and do not need to leave home to participate. Registration can be done online and PROMISE will send a simple, home-based DNA test kit. Participants provide a saliva sample and return it via pre-paid U.S. mail.

The kit will screen for 30 cancer risk genes. PROMISE will send the results and will provide a licensed genetic counselor to help participants understand their results. Participants will learn if they have any gene mutations that might affect their care plan, and they will receive the most current information about new research, clinical trial opportunities and treatments approved by the FDA. The results may inform patients of available treatment options and previously unknown risks of family members developing cancer. Participants will also make an important contribution to advancing research and understanding of prostate cancer by providing essential genetic information and long-term outcomes.

PROMISE is supported by nonprofit organizations. No pharmaceutical firms or any commercial interests are supporting this research. To learn more, visit prostatecancerPROMISE.org or call 646-449-3363.