Genetic Testing

Several genes which increase the risk of developing breast, ovarian or colorectal cancer have been identified and the complete sequences of these genes are known. The most well known genes, called BRCA1 and BRCA2, are involved in breast and ovarian cancer.

A small number of much rarer cancers are also known to be caused by inherited genetic factors.

A gene is made up of a long sequence of the letters C, G, A and T, and a faulty gene is caused by a change of one letter within the sequence. This subtle mistake can occur anywhere within the sequence of the gene.

Testing for genes which increase cancer risk is a complex process, and we appreciate that many people may prefer not to know if they carry a genetic fault. An essential part of this process is the provision of accurate, up to date and understandable information delivered by an expert specialist to individuals wishing to consider testing.