Dr. Gomella Discusses Role of BRCA1/2 in Prostate Cancer

Leonard G. Gomella, MD
Published: Thursday, Mar 21, 2019



Leonard G. Gomella, MD, professor, chair, Department of Urology, director, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center Network, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, discusses the role of BRCA1/2 in patients with prostate cancer.

The area of testing men for inherited risk of prostate cancer is rapidly evolving, Gomella says. Investigators are learning more about the best way to test men for BRCA1/2, the traditional genes that are considered in ovarian and breast cancers. These genes are proving to be equally as important in those with prostate cancer, he adds. These genes do not cause prostate cancer, but in men who do develop the disease, mutated BRCA1/2 appears to make the disease more aggressive.

Data suggest that men with these mutations in their prostate cancer are more likely to quickly develop have high-grade (Gleason 8) disease as well as metastatic disease. In fact, men with BRCA1/2 who develop prostate cancer tend to live 10 years less on average than those without the abnormalities. Gomella concludes that understanding these genes and figuring out how to best incorporate this knowledge into patient care is critical moving forward.
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Leonard G. Gomella, MD, professor, chair, Department of Urology, director, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center Network, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, discusses the role of BRCA1/2 in patients with prostate cancer.

The area of testing men for inherited risk of prostate cancer is rapidly evolving, Gomella says. Investigators are learning more about the best way to test men for BRCA1/2, the traditional genes that are considered in ovarian and breast cancers. These genes are proving to be equally as important in those with prostate cancer, he adds. These genes do not cause prostate cancer, but in men who do develop the disease, mutated BRCA1/2 appears to make the disease more aggressive.

Data suggest that men with these mutations in their prostate cancer are more likely to quickly develop have high-grade (Gleason 8) disease as well as metastatic disease. In fact, men with BRCA1/2 who develop prostate cancer tend to live 10 years less on average than those without the abnormalities. Gomella concludes that understanding these genes and figuring out how to best incorporate this knowledge into patient care is critical moving forward.

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