Can­cer app eyes genes

The Sunday Times - - NEWS - JANELLE MILES

A FREE web­site and mo­bile phone app will give pa­tients and their doc­tors up-to-date in­for­ma­tion on the two most com­mon breast can­cer genes, help­ing guide dif­fi­cult de­ci­sions on is­sues such as breast and ovary re­moval.

The web­site and app col­late in­for­ma­tion from data­bases world­wide on tens of thou­sands of vari­ants in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes and how likely they are to cause can­cer.

Can­cer sci­en­tist Amanda Spur­dle, of the QIMR Berghofer Med­i­cal Re­search In­sti­tute, said some vari­ants in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes in­creased a per­son’s risk of de­vel­op­ing breast and ovar­ian can­cers, while oth­ers were harm­less.

“The ef­fect of many vari­ants is still un­known,” As­so­ciate Pro­fes­sor Spur­dle said.

She said that un­til the de­vel­op­ment of the BRCA Ex­change web­site and app, in­for­ma­tion about BRCA vari­ants had been con­tained in many data­bases with no sin­gle, au­thor­i­ta­tive re­source to guide doc­tors, ge­netic coun­sel­lors and their pa­tients.

To ac­cess the web­site visit br­caex­change.org.

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