Genomics and Biomarkers

Section Editor: Leonard G. Gomella, MD

The role of genetic testing for prostate cancer risk is a rapidly changing area. Experts debate the indications of sending a patient on to genetic counseling for further potential screening for inherited prostate cancer risk. One major issue that needs to be addressed in the urology community today is recognizing the frequency of inherited mutations that are affecting prostate cancer patients. About 1-2% of prostate cancer patients have mutations in BRCA 1 and 2, among a long list of other mutations that are quite common in metastatic prostate cancer. Evaluating inherited prostate cancer risk in patients should also be expanded to asking about family history in breast cancer, ovarian cancer, pancreatic cancer, and colon cancer. Genetic testing could be a way to catch prostate cancer early and improve patient outcomes.

Genetic Testing for Inherited Prostate Cancer

Leonard G. Gomella, MD, FACS, discusses the evolving role of genetic testing for inherited family risks in prostate cancer patients. He advises urologists to be attentive to recent developments in genetic testing in order to better detect cancers in individual patients and their family members.




Leonard G. Gomella, MD
Thomas Jefferson University
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 

Leonard Gomella, MD, is the Bernard W. Godwin, Jr. Professor of Prostate Cancer and Chairman of the Department of Urology at the Sidney Kimmel Medical College. He joined the Jefferson faculty in 1988 and was appointed Chair in 2002. He serves as Senior Director for Clinical Affairs for the NCI designated Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson, Clinical Director of the SKCC Network and Urology Chair for NRG (RTOG). Dr. Gomella is involved in translational basic science and clinical research in the development of new diagnostic techniques and treatments for prostate and bladder cancer through the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center as Co-Leader of the Biology of Prostate Cancer Program. 

Supported in part by Myriad Genetics.