While less common in the United States, worldwide there are approximately 1 million new cases of gastric cancer each year, making this disease one of the most common cancers. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center has established the Early Onset and Familial Gastric Cancer Registry (EOFGC), with the primary objective of identifying factors that raise the risk of gastric cancer — especially inherited or acquired genetic alterations which cause gastric cancer in young patients.
The Registry prospectively collects epidemiological data, answers to a questionnaire about risk factors, family pedigrees, and biological material (including germline DNA) from patients with gastric cancer and matched “control” patients without the disease. Tumor tissue samples are also obtained from gastric cancer patients. From this clinical and epidemiological information and the accompanying biological material, researchers aim to identify the factors causing gastric cancer among individuals at high risk for this disease (especially due to inherited genetic alterations). The ultimate goal is to establish effective prevention and early detection strategies for those at high risk, and to develop new therapies for patients with more advanced disease.
MSKCC is the coordinating center for this study, along with four collaborating sites: The University of Southern California, NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, Queens Medical Center, and Obafemi Univeristy Hospital (Nigeria). At the collaborating institutions, data — including family pedigrees and blood specimens for germline DNA — are collected and sent to MSKCC for analysis.