Thursday, April 2, 2009

Promising Test Flags BRCA Mutations in Populations of Hispanic Women

In a recent small pilot study of 23 Hispanic women, Dr. Jeffrey Weitzel and colleagues found several specific mutations with the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes (associated with hereditary breast and ovarian cancer) that appear to be more common among Hispanics. Although the sample population was small, these results are promising and may make genetic testing for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome more affordable for individuals who are uninsured or underinsured. The efforts to offer targeted, more affordable testing are particularly important because Myriad Genetic Laboratories hold and enforce the patent rights for BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene testing; therefore, they control the cost of testing which has risen from $1,600 in 1998 to more than $3,100 per patient in 2009.

To read more about this article please click on the above light blue link.

Voelker R. JAMA. 2009;301(13):1326-1327.