ICARE Newsletter Summer 2015

Advances in Preventive and Treatment Approaches for Individuals with Lynch Syndrome

A study of over 1800 individuals with a mutation in one of the Lynch Syndrome genes was recently completed to assess whether aspirin and ibuprofen use may reduce colon cancer risk. Results showed that in those who took aspirin or ibuprofen for between 1 month and 4.9 years, the colon cancer risks were lower than those with less than one month of use.  This study provides additional evidence that both aspirin and ibuprofen may be an effective strategy to help reduce colorectal cancer risk among those with Lynch syndrome, where individuals currently rely solely on frequent colonoscopies for risk reduction. We encourage patients to speak with their healthcare provider about this study to determine if the addition of these medications would be right for them.

Pertaining to treatment of colorectal cancers, a new class of drugs that target the immune system (called PD-1 Inhibitors) has been shown to have potential efficacy in colorectal cancers with the MSI-H phenotype.  Given that most colorectal cancers in individuals with Lynch syndrome are MSI-H, this drug could potentially represent a targeted treatment for these individuals.  However, prior to becoming standard treatment in the clinical setting, clinical trials are needed.  These are currently being conducted to evaluate PD-1 inhibitors in individuals with MSI-H colorectal cancers. As clinical trials continue, we will monitor this exciting advancement for individuals with Lynch Syndrome.

 Ait Ouakrim D et al. Aspirin, Ibuprofen, and the Risk of Colorectal Cancer in Lynch Syndrome. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015 Jun 24;107(9). PMID: 26109217