News Releases

Can you inherit a cancer gene? Find out!

For Release Upon Receipt - April 25, 2014

St. Augustine

ST. AUGUSTINE, Trinidad and Tobago – Human genetics research has improved our understanding of a wide range of diseases, including cancers, inherited disorders and infectious diseases.  In many cases, the discovery of genes that are linked to the risk of developing a disease, or to how that disease progresses, has resulted in the development of genetic tests that, in many countries, are routinely used for clinical diagnosis and for monitoring both disease progression and the effectiveness of treatment strategies.  

In Trinidad and Tobago, genetic testing is still largely unavailable. While the underlying reasons are varied, the lack of integration of genomic research and technologies into the health care system in Trinidad and Tobago means that patients do not benefit. Lack of awareness about the nature of genetics research and genetic testing also limits the scope and depth of public participation in policy development.

To help counteract this lack of awareness, the Departments of Para-Clinical Sciences & Pre-Clinical Sciences of the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, host DNA, GENiES and GeNOMES: Understanding Gene Discovery and Genetic Testing in Cancer, part one of a Public Lecture Series that aims to educate the public about human genetics and to generate awareness about the field and its implications.  

This first lecture will focus on cancer. Attendees will leave with a basic understanding of the link between genetics and cancer, the limitations and implications of gene discovery and genetic tests for cancer, the types of information that can be gained from genetic testing and their significance for both the individual being tested and their biological family members.  

The lecture takes place on Thursday May 1, from 4.30pm–6.30pm, at Amphitheatre A, Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt. Hope. Experienced lecturers from the Faculty of Medical Sciences will share their knowledge with the audience. The lecture is open to the public and all are welcome to attend. 

For more information, please contact the Faculty of Medical Sciences at 645-2640 ext. 2883.    


About The UWI Since its inception in 1948, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged, regional University with well over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest, most longstanding higher education provider in the Commonwealth Caribbean, with four campuses in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Open Campus. The UWI has faculty and students from more than 40 countries and collaborative links with 160 universities globally; it offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food & Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology and Social Sciences. UWI’s seven priority focal areas are linked closely to the priorities identified by CARICOM and take into account such over-arching areas of concern to the region as environmental issues, health and wellness, gender equity and the critical importance of innovation.  

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.) 

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