Current Breast Cancer Reports

, Volume 7, Issue 2, pp 98–104 | Cite as

Multiple-Gene Panels and the Future of Genetic Testing

  • Allison W. KurianEmail author
  • James M. Ford
Risk, Prevention, and Screening (TA Patel, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Risk, Prevention, and Screening


Clinical cancer risk assessment is advancing from a past of single-gene testing toward a future of whole-genome sequencing. Cancer-focused panels of 6 to >100 genes have recently emerged into oncology practice, approximately doubling the number of patients for whom a genetic diagnosis can be made. Areas of uncertainty include the degree of cancer risk associated with mutations in specific genes on multiple-gene panels, and the optimal use of cancer risk-reducing interventions based on panel testing results. Clinician expertise is required for appropriate selection and interpretation of multiple-gene panels, and well-designed clinical trials will be essential to realize the full potential of new sequencing technologies.


Cancer genetics Breast cancer Ovarian cancer BRCA1 BRCA2 Multiple-gene panel Next-generation sequencing Hereditary cancer risk assessment 



The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Jan Weimer Junior Faculty Chair in Breast Cancer Research and the Suzanne Pride Bryan Breast Cancer Research Fund at Stanford University (to A.W.K.) and the Breast Cancer Research Fund (to J.M.F.). A.W.K. and J.M.F. have received research funding from Myriad Genetics and Invitae.

Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

Allison W. Kurian and James M. Ford have received research funding from Myriad Genetics and Invitae.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA
  2. 2.Department of Health Research and PolicyStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA
  3. 3.Department of GeneticsStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA
  4. 4.Department of PediatricsStanford University School of MedicineStanfordUSA

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