Males with BRCA mutations have increased risk of certain cancers

April 17, 2018

(HealthDay)—Males with BRCA mutations have increased incidence of malignant disease, specifically prostate, melanoma, pancreas, and breast cancers, according to a research letter published online April 12 in JAMA Oncology.

Roy Mano, M.D., from Rabin Medical Center in Petach Tikva, Israel, and colleagues evaluated 196 male BRCA carriers (117 BRCA1 and 79 BRCA2) between February 2014 and February 2017. Using a predefined protocol, patients aged 40 years or older were screened for prostate, breast, colorectal, pancreatic, and skin malignant abnormalities.

The researchers found that 17 percent of the patients were diagnosed with 46 malignant abnormalities; 28 percent were identified during screening. At first cancer diagnosis, the median age was 54 years. Multiple malignant abnormalities were reported in seven patients, with a median of three per patient. Prostatic adenocarcinoma was the most common malignant abnormality (8.6 and 3.8 percent of BRCA1 and BRCA2 carriers, respectively). Men with BRCA mutations had a significant increase in the overall incidence of malignant disease compared with the Jewish-Israeli male population (standardized incidence ratio, 8). Elevated incidence of prostate, melanoma, pancreas, and breast cancers, but not colon cancer, was seen in association with BRCA mutations.

"Our initial findings suggest that in addition to screening for prostate and , as recommended in current guidelines, there may be a role for screening for pancreatic cancer and melanoma, whereas screening for may not be justified," the authors write.

Explore further: Busting myths surrounding cancer and genetic testing

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