Genetic testing is conducted to estimate the possibility of developing cancer in your lifetime. These tests help detect mutations in your DNA. If some of your family members or blood relatives were diagnosed with cancer, you become more likely to receive the genes too. Hence, genetic testing informs you whether cancer runs in your family. Genetic testing may help in the following:
- Predicting the risk of a particular disease
- Finding out whether your genes pose a cancer risk to your children
- Provide information to prepare you in advance
Here is an article explaining the importance of genetic testing by ‘Onco Life Cancer Centre’, the preferred cancer specialist in Pune, Kolhapur, Satara, and adjacent regions.
Genetic tests are available only for certain types of cancer such as Breast, Ovarian, Colon, Thyroid, Prostate, Pancreatic, Melanoma, Stomach and kidney cancer. ‘Onco life Cancer Centre’ in Satara is one of the finest testing centres for people looking for a cancer hospital in Pune or nearby regions.
A point to note here is that Genetic tests do not say whether you will get cancer or not. They just tell you how much chance you have of getting cancer. This means, even if you have a 95% genetic chance of inheriting cancer, you can adopt certain preventive measures to avoid letting cancer happen to you.
What are the risk factors of genetic mutation?
An inherited gene mutation can cause cancer to be developed due to heredity from parent to child. The factors which increase the risk of hereditary cancer are as follows:
- You have many first-degree relatives such as mother, father, sisters, brothers, children with cancer.
- There is a single gene mutation which is a link to a group of cancer such as breast, ovarian, colorectal, and pancreatic cancers in your family.
- One or several of the family members have more than one type of cancer.
- One or several of the family members have had cancer at a very young age.
- One or several of the family members have a rare type of cancer such as male breast cancer or eye cancer.
- One or more family members have already had genetic testing that found a mutation.
Why is this test important?
These genetic tests are used as a guide for treating certain cancers. They help to inform a healthcare practitioner as to whether certain targeted cancer drugs may or may not work. Genes are made up of DNA, which is like the code required for the production of certain proteins. Alteration in the DNA, called as polymorphisms or mutations, can occur throughout the population. Mutations can affect all cells but can occur later in life due to exposures to radiation, toxins or any other unknown reasons, resulting in cancer.
In certain types of cancers, there may be a genetic mutation that leads to an increased amount of a particular protein present in the tumor tissue or to the production of a protein that has altered activity. Tumors with these mutations tend to grow and spread more aggressively and are more resistant to chemotherapy too. Genetic tests for cancer therapy detect the mutations, thereby identifying tumors that may be susceptible to targeted therapy. Conversely, genetic tests may also identify tumors that will not respond to targeted therapy.
The benefits of genetic testing
One of the advantages of knowing whether you have a genetic mutation or not is that you can work with your doctor to assess your cancer risks and facilitate preventive oncology. This can help prevent cancer completely or at least find it an early stage when it’s most treatable. This will not just inform you but will also prepare your family for themselves.
To get yourself tested, visit Onco Life Cancer Centre in Satara where the staff consists of the best of experienced cancer specialists, oncologists & hematologist in Pune and Mumbai.