BRCA: Myth vs. Reality
May 20, 2016•9 min
Learn more about common myths surrounding genetic testing for breast cancer.People with a family history of breast cancer often seek genetic testing to find out whether they carry mutations on key genes called BRCA1 and BRCA2. These genes may increase risk for breast cancer and other diseases.BRCA1 and BRCA2 are human genes that produce tumor suppressor proteins.
These proteins help repair damaged DNA and play a role in ensuring the stability of the cell’s genetic material. When either of these genes is mutated or altered in such a way that its protein product either is not made or does not function correctly, DNA damage may not be repaired properly. As a result, cells are more likely to develop additional genetic alterations that can lead to cancer.However, misconceptions about how these mutations are passed down — and about what the tests themselves mean — can get in the way of sound decision-making.
Listen in as Heather Sulzbach, MS, ANP-C, AOCN-P, joins Dr. Susanne to help clear the air about a few common myths concerning BRCA1 and BRCA2.