The recent FDA approval of the direct-to-consumer BRCA1/BRCA2 test from 23andMe speaks to increasing awareness of how our genes affect cancer risk. At the same time, it underscores the importance involving healthcare professionals to understand the implications that a genetic test result may have for cancer risk. It is even more important to understand that the scope of this particular direct- to-consumer-test is limited, and a negative test result does not mean cancer risk is absent.
News about Hereditary Cancer
There are a percentage of individuals in the San Francisco Bay Area who may be carrying disease-causing mutations in their genes that increase their risk of developing breast, ovarian, pancreatic, prostate or skin cancers. The UCSF Center for BRCA Research believes that these individuals are being missed by the national and insurance-set guidelines created to identify those in need of hereditary cancer screening. Population-based testing will allow us to identify and better serve individuals and their family members who are at risk for hereditary cancer.
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) released its newest version of guidelines for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer titled: Genetic/Familial High-Risk Assessment: Breast and Ovarian, Version 1.2016.