Genome Testing Specialist

Kasraeian Urology

Urology located in Jacksonville, FL & Jacksonville Beach, FL

Genome testing for prostate cancer could save lives and be an effective tool to help treat patients who already have the disease. Ahmad Kasraeian, MD, FACS, and Ali Kasraeian, MD, FACS, are experienced, compassionate physicians who offer genome testing for their patients at Kasraeian Urology. There are two clinics in Jacksonville, Florida, and one in Jacksonville Beach, Florida. Call the one nearest you today.

Genome Testing Q & A

What is genome testing?

Genome testing is a method of identifying men who are at risk of developing prostate cancer. It’s also a valuable tool when creating treatment plans for men with advanced prostate cancer.

Recent research shows that genetic changes can increase the risk of having prostate cancer, a disease that affects around 165,000 men in the United States each year. Analysis of patients with prostate cancer shows that:

  • Men have a 1 in 9 chance of receiving a diagnosis of prostate cancer
  • Odds raise to 1 in 5 for men who have a family history of prostate cancer
  • Risk is 74% higher in African-American men than in Caucasian men

Men are two to three times more likely to develop prostate cancer if a close male relative had the condition, and a family history of breast cancer or ovarian cancer also increases the risk factor. Up to 10% of prostate cancers have hereditary causes, and the condition also tends to be worse in men who have specific inherited genetic mutations.

What genes does genomic testing look for?

The genes so far identified as having links to prostate cancer are:

  • BRCA1
  • BRCA2
  • HOXB13
  • ATM
  • DNA mismatch repair genes linked to Lynch Syndrome

BRCA1 and BRCA2 are the genes that also cause breast and ovarian cancers, for which women have been able to get screening tests for several years. These genes, particularly BRCA2, are key factors in causing aggressive prostate cancer, but now genome testing is becoming a viable option for many men.

Should I undergo genome testing?

Anyone can undergo genome testing, but for some patients, it can be a necessity.

If you have a family history of prostate, breast, colon, ovarian, or pancreatic cancer, you should consider genome testing.

If you have localized prostate cancer, cancer affecting only the prostate, and you also have genetic risk factors, genome testing would be a sensible idea.

The Gleason score, which rates the aggressiveness of your cancer, is a good indicator as to whether genome testing is appropriate. If you score 7 or higher and you have the family history risk factors, genome testing is advisable.

You might also want to consider genome testing if you have metastatic prostate cancer, meaning the disease has spread beyond the prostate. Recent research suggests that around 12% of men who have metastatic prostate cancer also have inherited genetic mutations.

This is significant because drugs called PARP inhibitors are an effective treatment of inherited prostate cancer. Some specific chemotherapy and immunotherapy treatments have a positive effect on men who have genetic mutations.

If you have any queries about genome testing or concerns about your prostate health, call Kasraeian Urology today.