Colorectal cancer mainly exists in people older than 50, but it also can occur in young adults who have a genetic condition called familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP). Polyps can begin to form inside the intestinal tract during their teen years. If FAP is not diagnosed and treated, they have almost a 100 percent chance of developing colorectal cancer.
While FAP is uncommon, understanding its genetic basis could lead researchers at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to better approaches to several kinds of pediatric cancers. In a new study funded by the National Cancer Institute, Andrei Thomas-Tikhonenko, PhD, chief of the Division of Cancer Pathobiology, and colleagues aim to identify subsets of patients who potentially would benefit the most from emerging drugs targeting pathways that are important to colorectal cancer development.