Tens of thousands of women should be offered gene tests in a bid to prevent more than 10,000 cases of breast and ovarian cancer in the next decade, according to a major study.
New research has found that testing survivors and tracing their family, when mutations are found, can identify twice as many women at high risk of disease as the current approach.
Doing so means those found to be carrying BRCA mutations – dubbed the “Jolie gene” after the Hollywood actress – could be offered closer monitoring, and preventive measures, such as a mastectomy or removal of the ovaries.
Those with the mutations can have up to a 85 per cent chance of developing breast cancer – seven times the rate for an average woman.
The landmark study by the Royal Marsden Hospital and the Institute of Cancer Research suggests the new approach could prevent more than 11,000 cases of cancer in a decade – and save more than…