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Understanding Cancer Series

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  • Posted: 10/20/2009

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Slide 2


Genome-Wide Profiling: Global Search

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Single-gene tests alone are unable to completely unravel the complexity of cancer. Because cancer involves the simultaneous interaction of many different mutated genes and proteins within malignant cells and their surrounding tissues, a global approach is needed to capture all the activity. Scientists have developed new methods to cast a genome-wide search and look globally for all the changes in DNA, RNA, or proteins* that contribute to cancer's progression. These new approaches are collectively called genome-wide profiling.

Again, a geographical analogy shows the global scale of the search involved in genome-wide profiling.

(*To learn more basic information about DNA, RNA, and proteins in relation to cancer, please visit

Graphic again shows a globe and a continent and a country and a U.S., all geographic items are of decreasing size, below this row appears a cell, a chromosome, a gene, and then a few chemical bases, also all of decreasing size. Next a magnifying glass shows that genome-wide profiling is like looking at only the largest end of the scale, the genome.