New research has suggested that there is a genetic link between the development of cancers in three separate areas of the body, potentially paving the way for new treatments.
According to BBC News, scientists at the Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington found one-fifth of melanomas, glioblastomas and Ewing's sarcomas contained a defective version of the STAG2 gene.
"Scientists have known for more than 100 years that having too many or too few chromosomes is linked to cancer," said Cancer Research UK senior science information manager Dr Julie Sharp. "These results suggest that this is not just a characteristic."
Professor Todd Waldman, one of the report's authors, explained that the mutation of STAG2 could potentially be a precursor to the development of tumours. He added that further work would be carried out to see if there is a link to other cancers.
Earlier in the week, experts from the University of Minnesota's School of Public Health warned women that they are at higher risk of some smoking-related diseases than men.