Genetic Risk Factors for Breast and Ovarian Cancer
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in Israeli women. Approximately 4,500 women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. In 5-10% of women, breast cancer develops as a result of a hereditary predisposition. The most common cause of hereditary breast cancer is a genetic change (mutation) in one of two genes: BRCA1 and BRCA2. Changes in these genes are especially common in women of Ashkenazi origin, but they are found among women of all ethnic backgrounds.
What is the "Prevention GENEration" program?
Many women who were diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer are not aware that genetic testing is important for them and for their female relatives. The presence of an inherited cancer predisposition is a risk factor for cancer, but if the cause is identified, it presents an opportunity for the prevention of additional cancers in the woman and in her relatives.
The "Prevention GENEration" program was initiated in order to raise awareness of the importance of genetic testing in women with breast cancer and ovarian cancer and to assist them in obtaining a genetics evaluation.
The program was established by the Israel Cancer Association (ICA) with the support of the Northern Charitable Foundation, Inc. (NCF), in collaboration with The Israel Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer Consortium, headed by Professor Ephrat Levy-Lahad, Head of the Department of Genetics at Shaare Zedek Medical Center, sponsored by the ICA.