More African Americans die from colon cancer

accreditation
iStock

African Americans with colon cancer are about half as likely as whites to get a type of colon cancer that has a better chance of survival, a new study says.

This may be one of the reasons why blacks are more likely to die of colon cancer than whites, the researchers said.

Researchers analyzed information from 503 patients in the North Carolina Colon Cancer Study. They found that 7 percent of blacks and 14 percent of whites had cancer with a genetic marker called microsatellite instability (MSI).

MSI colon cancer is known to be resistant to a chemotherapy drug. However, even without chemotherapy, patients with MSI colon cancer tend to have better outcomes than those without the genetic marker.

"We know that patients with MSI colon cancer do better without chemotherapy. But these improved survival benefits are limited among African Americans with colon cancer," study author Dr. John Carethers, chair of internal medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School, said in a university news release.

The researchers also found that black patients were more likely than whites to have cancer on the right side of the colon. Compared to left-sided colon cancer, right-sided cancer is more likely to be missed during screening and more likely to more advanced when it's found.

"Right-sided colon cancer may be the 'black ice' of the colon, unseen but potentially deadly. Strategies to better recognize and detect right-sided cancer may need to be pursued in a broader fashion," Carethers said.

The study was published in the journal PLoS One.

Read more:
Colon, rectal cancers the same disease
Aspirin may treat colon cancer
Genes, obesity, colon cancer linked

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Zama zama crackdown: What are your thoughts on West Village residents taking the law into their own hands?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Authorities should bring in the army already
10% - 2505 votes
Illegal miners can't be scapegoated for all crime
52% - 12648 votes
What else did we expect without no proper policing
34% - 8266 votes
Vigilante groups are also part of the problem
3% - 818 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
16.93
-0.4%
Rand - Pound
20.17
-0.2%
Rand - Euro
17.08
-0.4%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.71
-0.4%
Rand - Yen
0.12
-0.1%
Gold
1,756.29
-0.1%
Silver
19.39
-0.8%
Palladium
2,148.00
-0.5%
Platinum
910.50
-0.4%
Brent-ruolie
96.59
+3.0%
Top 40
64,184
0.0%
All Share
71,011
0.0%
Resource 10
63,890
0.0%
Industrial 25
86,864
0.0%
Financial 15
16,201
0.0%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE