Funded in partnership with the Goldberg Family Foundation
We need better tools to screen for and diagnose cancer earlier and at a curable stage in individuals that carry inherited mutations such as BRCA1/2 and other cancer susceptibility genes that put them at high risk for breast, ovarian, prostate, pancreatic and other cancers. We propose to use powerful new approaches for “next-generation” DNA sequencing from standard blood samples to identify circulating tumor DNA mutations as a very sensitive marker of early cancers in high-risk individuals. These “liquid biopsies” may prove to be a far easier and more sensitive way to screen for cancer than our current imaging based approaches using mammograms, MRI’s, etc. To this end, we have been collecting blood samples from our genetically high-risk patients with and without cancer, and before and after prophylactic or cancer surgeries, for liquid-biopsy analyses using technology developed at Stanford.