UCLA researchers have linked higher levels of aromatase, an 1) ___ that naturally makes estradiol from testosterone, to more aggressive disease and lower survival rates in women over 65 with Stage 1 or 2 lung cancer. The discovery not only gives physicians a possible new tool to predict survival, but may also provide a target for therapy using aromatase 2) ___, already approved for the treatment of breast cancer. All indications suggest that aromatase is a very powerful prognostic marker that lets us predict which patients have a higher likelihood of prolonged survival versus 3) ___ from lung cancer. If doctors know that a woman has a higher probability of longer-term 4) ___, they may choose a more strategic course of action, compared to a woman with a more aggressive form of lung cancer, where doctors might choose a more aggressive course of therapy. Another notable finding from this study is that survival can be predicted at a relatively early stage of the 5) ___, when there are more treatment options. Based on research done at Jonsson Cancer Center labs, scientists discovered that 6) ___ played a role in lung cancer growth, much as it does in breast cancer. In animal models, researchers showed that either estradiol or aromatase triggered the growth of human lung cancer tumors. They then looked retrospectively at lung cancer tumor samples from more than 750 men and women seen at UCLA and the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center using a novel high-throughput technology called tissue 7) ___ .Aromatase levels were measured and correlated with disease aggression and survival rates. Researchers found that in women 65 and over, higher 8) ___ levels were associated with more aggressive disease and a greater risk of death. The study, conducted as part of the Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in lung cancer at UCLA, appears in the Nov. 1 issue of the peer-reviewed journal Cancer Research.

ANSWERS: 1) enzyme; 2) inhibitors; 3) death; 4) survival; 5) disease; 6) estradiol; 7) microarray; 8) aromatase