Recent advances in
genetic testing have uncovered that the first one or two steps toward blood
cancer are present in about 10% of older people without evidence of blood
cancer.1-4 Aging is a risk factor for acquiring these
mutations. The majority of subjects with these findings do not develop blood
cancer but some will for unclear reasons. Unexpectedly, the same acquired
genetic mutations in blood cells increase the risk for heart disease (heart
attacks and strokes) and deaths associated with heart disease.2
These genetic risks
may impact a lot of people. Our goal is to study these acquired genetic
mutations and to collect data that will help us define the risks for heart
disease and blood cancer development more precisely. We hope this study will
help us identify those at the highest risk for these often-fatal diseases. With
this data, we can then formulate a strategy to intervene before the diseases
have fully manifested and potentially improve survival outcomes. We have
focused our studies in women because a special test performed on blood samples
requires the presence of two X chromosomes.5,6 This special test enhances our ability to
identify women who are more likely to carry these acquired genetic mutations in
their blood cells.
This study is not associated with a drug treatment at this phase of the study. We are confident that the knowledge gained in this research will apply more broadly to older men and women and improve treatment strategies in the future.
Does NOT cost anything to participants
Does NOT involve any treatment
Requires very little time and effort: participants will fill out an initial health survey, then provide annual health updates and a blood sample (about 2 teaspoons) every 1 to 2 years at study-directed opportunities.
Participants Share Why They Joined the WEAR in Oregon Study
Marcia Johnson: "I'm supporting this study because Cheri: "I think it is important to gather information on women's health to better it's an easy way to help other women." address their gender-specific healthcare issues."
Elaine Kaspar: "I support this study
because of the possibility of being able to find cancer and heart disease
before they strike and stop them."