Incidence of BRCA1 and BRCA2 non-founder mutations in patients of Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry
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An estimated 1:40 individuals of Ashkenazi Jewish (AJ) ancestry carry one of three common founder mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2, resulting in the inherited cancer condition, Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer (HBOC) syndrome. Targeted testing for these three mutations (BRCA1 187delAG, BRCA1 5385insC, and BRCA2 6174delT) is therefore recommended for all AJ breast and ovarian cancer patients, regardless of age of diagnosis or family history. Comprehensive analysis of both genes is recommended for a subset of AJ patients in whom founder mutations are not identified, but estimates of the yield from comprehensive analysis in this population vary widely. We sought to determine the proportion of non-founder mutations as a percentage of all mutations in BRCA1 and BRCA2 among AJ patients to inform decisions about HBOC testing strategies in this population. We analyzed the genetic testing results for 37,952 AJ patients for whom clinical testing of BRCA1 and BRCA2 was performed at Myriad Genetic Laboratories from January 2006 through August 2013. Analysis was limited to AJ-only patients for whom the initial test order was either (1) comprehensive testing, or (2) founder mutation testing with instructions to automatically “reflex” to comprehensive analysis if negative. Cases were excluded if a separate follow-up order was placed to reflex to comprehensive analysis only after the founder mutation testing was reported out as negative. Among all BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations detected in these groups, the percentage of non-founder mutations was 13 % (104/802) and 7.2 % (198/2,769). One-hundred and eighty-nine unique non-founder mutations were detected, 76 in BRCA1 and 113 in BRCA2. Non-founder mutations make up between 7.2 and 13.0 % of all BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations in Ashkenazi Jews. A wide range of mutations are present, most of which are also seen in non-AJ individuals.
KeywordsHereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer Ashkenazi Jewish Founder mutations BRCA1 BRCA2
Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer
Human Genome Variation Society
National Comprehensive Cancer Network
The authors acknowledge Heidi McCoy and Dmitry Pruss for their contributions to this project, and all of the Myriad staff who participate in the testing process and reporting of results to providers and patients. We would also like to thank Kirstin Roundy for her assistance in formatting and editing this manuscript.
Conflict of interest
The authors are full-time employees of Myriad Genetic Laboratories, Inc.
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