Breast Cancer Gene

The New England Journal of Medicine has just published several studies concerning the breast cancer genes found in some Jewish women.

The key message is that the number of people who have mutations of these genes and who get cancer is well below previous estimates.

Furthermore, the number of women with breast cancer who also have the abnormal gene is lower than expected.

This is good news for patients with the genes, but it also means the tests for these genes are not as informative as previously thought.

We're learning an enormous amount about genetics, including the fact that the new information must be used very cautiously.

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This page is maintained by David M. Pilasky of the Office of Information Systems and was last updated May 27th, 1997.