Inherited Cancer Risk (Cancer Genetics)

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Associate Director: Zsofia Stadler
Scientific Leads: Kenneth Offit and Jada Hamilton
Operational Lead: Jesse Galle

Project Description: Personal and family cancer history play a role in determining when people with cancer should have genetic risk assessment and additional cancer screening. Yet testing for genetic susceptibility in people with cancer is often not completed.

To meet this challenge, the germline cancer genetics component of the PIP program was created. Its aim is to develop and implement a broad and effective genetic-testing tool for people being treated at MSK, as well as for their families. This evaluation is done through our germline MSK-IMPACT™ test.

When germline susceptibility in people with cancer is identified, it will result in enhanced screening and risk-reduction interventions. This testing also has potential therapeutic implications.

Germline testing of at-risk family members can help our researchers identify where cancer risk-reduction and interception efforts will have the utmost impact. This effort is aimed at early detection and cancer prevention in these family members.

As part of the research effort driving this work, the program brings together clinical and laboratory investigators with a broad understanding of germline genetics, as well as psychosocial and behavioral research scientists. The initiative’s primary focus is on young adults (ages 18 to 35) with cancer. Their germline risk across many types of cancer has been poorly defined.