Multigene Cancer Panels: Implications for Pre- and Post-test Genetic Counseling
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Purpose of Review
The availability of multigene cancer panel testing (MCPT) has revolutionized the care of individuals and families at risk for hereditary cancer. This review discusses fundamental components of genetic counseling, test selection, result interpretation, and follow-up related to MCPT.
Routine use of MCPT increases the diagnostic yield for major hereditary cancers such as breast, ovarian, and colon, with the identification of pathogenic variants in high- and moderate-penetrance genes. In addition, the larger the panel, the more likely one or more variants of uncertain significance will be identified. Furthermore, although index cases who test negative after multigene panel testing may derive some reassurance about hereditary risk, assessment and management based on personal and family history are the keys.
Given the complexity of MCPT, pre- and post-test genetic counseling approaches have been adapted to optimize the delivery of information and support to patients and their families.
KeywordsCancer genetics Genetic counseling Multigene cancer panels Cancer genetic testing
The authors are grateful to Savannah Binion, BA, for assistance with manuscript preparation and editing.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Ms. Kolla declares no conflicts of interest.
Ms. Grady reports consulting fees from ActX (Seattle, WA).
Ms. Peshkin reports consulting fees from Clear Genetics, Inc. (San Francisco, CA).
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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