In recent years, Dr. Rose Kenny has become more invested in researching the issues that various genetic mutations can cause. This led to her getting a test for genetic mutations herself, resulting in her discovery that she carries a mutated BRCA-2 gene, which places her at a heightened risk of contracting breast cancer.
Many people may be familiar with the BRCA gene due to Angelina Jolie’s much-publicized decision to undergo prophylactic surgery upon discovering that she had inherited the gene, however, there is still plenty of information available for those who have not encountered it before.
What Is It?
In its regular form BRCA-2 is a human tumor suppressor gene, often referred to as a caretaker gene, that most commonly occurs in the human breast. Its role is to repair damaged DNA or to destroy cells if they are beyond repair.
The Risk Caused By Mutation
Unfortunately, the BRCA-2 gene may mutate, with the effect often being inherited between parent and child when the issue occurs. This mutation limits the gene’s ability to repair damaged DNA, which results in those carrying the mutated gene being placed at higher risk of contracting breast cancer. This has led to it gaining the moniker of the “breast cancer susceptibility gene”, though it is only the mutation that increases risk.
Identification and Remedy
Those who are concerned about the possibility of carrying the mutation can have themselves tested. Options are available, such as prophylactic surgery, to reduce the risks caused by the mutation. Furthermore, medical professionals, like Dr. Rose Kenny, are researching ways to counter and treat the mutation’s effects.