Margreet G E M Ausems

Utrecht University, Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands

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Publications (176)684.57 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Certain ethnic groups seem to have less access to cancer genetic counseling. Our study was to investigate the participation in cancer genetic counseling among migrant breast cancer patients of Turkish and Moroccan origin. Hospital medical records of Turkish and Moroccan and of a comparative group of non-Turkish/Moroccan newly diagnosed breast cancer patients were studied. All women were diagnosed between 2007 and 2012. Eligibility for genetic counseling was assessed with a checklist. A total of 156 Turkish/Moroccan patients were identified, and 321 patients were assigned to the comparative group. About one third (35 %) of the Turkish/Moroccan patients fulfilled criteria for breast cancer genetic counseling, compared to 21 % of the comparative group (P = 0.001); this was largely due to a relatively young age at diagnosis in the migrant group (26 % <40 years vs 5 % in the comparative group, P = 0.0001). Uptake of genetic counseling among eligible patients was 47 % in the migrant group and 56 % in the comparative group; differences in uptake were seen among the patients diagnosed before 40 years of age (48 % in the migrant group vs 81 % in the comparative group; P = 0.021). When adjusted for age at diagnosis, ethnicity was associated with discussing referral to genetic counseling and its actual uptake. The Turkish/Moroccan ethnicity appears to be associated with a lower uptake of genetic counseling, mainly caused by the lower uptake in the young age-group. The major barrier to participation in genetic counseling seems to lie within the referral process.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2016 · Familial Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: It is unclear if and to what extent family history of breast/ovarian cancer or BRCA1/2-mutation carriership influences breast cancer treatment strategy. We investigated whether treatment differed between patients from BRCA1/2 families and those unselected for family history. Methods: We included 478 BRCA1/2-related patients referred for genetic testing before or after diagnosis. Two references were used: 13,498 population-based and 6896 hospital-based patients. Surgical treatment and adjuvant chemotherapy use was analyzed using logistic regression models, stratified by tumor size, nodal status, age at and period of diagnosis, and estrogen receptor status (ER). Results: BRCA1/2 cases aged 35 - 52 years at diagnosis and/or with tumors < 2 cm were more likely to have undergone a modified radical mastectomy (Odd Ratios (OR) ranging from 2.8 to 5.1) compared to the references. This effect was most pronounced in patients treated after 1995 (OR 5.7 to 10.3). Compared to the reference groups, chemotherapy was more often administered to BRCA1 and ER-negative BRCA1/2-cases irrespective of age and nodal status (OR 1.9 to 24.3). Conclusion: After 1995 treatment of BRCA1/2-associated patients consisted notably of more mastectomies and adjuvant chemotherapy than their population-based counterparts with the same tumor characteristics. There is a need to be aware of such differences in daily practice and interpretation of survival studies on BRCA1/2 mutation carriers.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2015 · Advances in Breast Cancer Research
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    ABSTRACT: Inconclusive genetic test results including screening recommendations for the breast cancer patients and their first-degree relatives are the most common outcomes of BRCA 1/2 testing. Patients themselves should communicate these results to their relatives. Our aim was to explore communication of breast cancer genetic counseling results with daughters and sisters over a long period of time. Breast cancer patients, who had received an inconclusive DNA test result 7-14 years earlier, completed a self-report questionnaire. Additionally, in-depth interviews were conducted and analysed thematically. Of the 93 respondents, 85 (91 %) considered themselves responsible for communicating genetic test results to relatives. In-depth interviews (n = 14) showed, that counselees wanted 'to hand over' their responsibilities to communicate the test results and screening recommendations to their sisters. Although most patients had informed their daughters and sisters about the genetic test results, usually little is spoken about genetic test results and screening recommendations once the duty of informing is completed. We recommend that, similar to the procedure for BRCA1/2-mutation carriers, a separate letter for first-degree relatives of patients with an inconclusive test result should be provided. In this way information about risks and screening recommendations can be verified by family members years after genetic testing has been completed.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2015 · Journal of Genetic Counseling
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    ABSTRACT: Background: For patients with an identified germline E-cadherin-1 (CDH1) mutation, prophylactic gastrectomy is the treatment of choice to eliminate the high risk of developing diffuse gastric cancer. Laparoscopic total gastrectomy with jejunal pouch reconstruction is a novel approach that may be especially suitable in these patients. Methods: Patients with a germline CDH1 mutation who underwent prophylactic laparoscopic total gastrectomy with jejunal pouch were included in our prospective database. Results: A total of 11 patients with a median age of 40 (22-61) years were included. The average operative time was 4:26 ± 0:49 h and the average blood loss was 219 ± 155 ml. Median length of hospital stay was 10 (7-27) days. In two patients, an esophagojejunal anastomotic leakage occurred (grade 4). The leakages were seen in patient numbers 2 and 3, which may be a result of a learning curve. The latter eight patients did not develop anastomotic leakage. Pulmonary complications occurred in one patient with atelectasis and in one patient with pneumonia (grade 2). The 60-day mortality rate was 0 %. Multiple foci of intramucosal diffuse gastric signet ring cell carcinoma were found in the resection specimen of 9/11 (82 %) patients. All 11/11 (100 %) resections were microscopically radical. Conclusions: Prophylactic laparoscopic total gastrectomy with jejunal pouch reconstruction in patients with a CDH1 germline mutation is feasible and safe. In 82 % of patients, foci of intramucosal diffuse gastric signet ring cell carcinoma in the resection specimen were found.
    Preview · Article · Oct 2015 · Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery
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    ABSTRACT: We studied counselees’ expressed understanding of the risk estimate and surveillance recommendation in the final consultation for breast cancer genetic counseling in relation with their risk perception, worry and cancer surveillance adherence 1 year post-counseling. Consecutive counselees were included from 2008 to 2010. Counselees with an indication for diagnostic DNA-testing for themselves or a breast cancer affected relative were requested to complete online questionnaires before and after counseling and one year after counseling (N = 152–124). Self-reported surveillance was compared to surveillance recommendations. Consultations were videotaped. Counselees’ reactions to the risks and recommendations were coded. Statements about the risk perception and surveillance intentions of breast cancer unaffected counselees were transcribed. Associations with outcomes were explored. Almost all breast cancer unaffected counselees (>90 %) reacted to their risk estimate with an utterance indicating understanding and this reaction was not significantly associated with their post-visit risk perception alignment. Over one-third (38.6 %) overestimated their risk post-counseling. Few counselees (5.8 %) expressed surveillance intentions. One year after counseling, about three-quarters (74.0 %) of the breast cancer unaffected counselees had adhered to the surveillance recommendation. Almost one-quarter (23.3 %) had performed more mammograms/MRI scans than recommended, which was associated with prior mammography uptake (n = 47; X 2 = 5.2; p = .02). Counselees’ post-counseling overestimation of their risk, high levels of worry and high surveillance uptake were not reflected in their reactions to the counselor’s information during the final visit.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2015 · Journal of Genetic Counseling
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    ABSTRACT: Women with an increased lifetime risk of ovarian cancer are advised to undergo risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy (RRSO) to reduce risk of adnexal cancer. We investigated the uptake of RRSO and evaluated the influence of personal medical history of (breast) cancer, risk-reducing mastectomy (RRM) and family history of ovarian and/or breast cancer on the RRSO decision. This single center retrospective observational cohort study was performed in a tertiary multidisciplinary clinic for hereditary cancer of the University Medical Centre Utrecht, the Netherlands. Women ≥35 years old with an estimated lifetime risk of ovarian cancer ≥10 %, who had completed childbearing, were eligible for RRSO. Uptake and timing of RRSO were analyzed. Influence of personal medical history and family history on RRSO decision making, were evaluated with logistic regression. The study population consisted of 218 women (45.0 % BRCA1 mutation carrier, 28.0 % BRCA2 mutation carrier, 27.0 % with familial susceptibility) with 87.2 % RRSO uptake. The median age at RRSO was 44.5 (range 28-73) years. Of the women undergoing RRSO, 78.3 % needed ≤3 consultations to reach this decision. Multivariable analysis showed a significant difference in RRSO uptake for women with a history of RRM [OR 3.66 95 % CI (1.12-11.98)], but no significant difference in women with a history of breast cancer [OR 1.38 95 % CI (0.50-3.79)], nor with a family history of ovarian and/or breast cancer [OR 1.10 95 % CI (0.44-2.76)]. We conclude that RRSO counseling, without the alternative of screening, is effective. The uptake is increased in women with a history of RRM.
    Preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Familial Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: The p16-Leiden founder mutation in the CDKN2A gene is the most common cause of Familial Atypical Multiple Mole Melanoma (FAMMM) syndrome in the Netherlands. Individuals with this mutation are at increased risk for developing melanoma of the skin, as well as pancreatic cancer. However, there is a notable interfamilial variability in the occurrence of pancreatic cancer among p16-Leiden families. We aimed to test whether previously identified genetic risk factors for pancreatic cancer modify the risk for pancreatic cancer in p16-Leiden germline mutation carriers. Seven pancreatic cancer-associated SNPs were selected from the literature and were genotyped in a cohort of 185 p16-Leiden germline mutation carriers from 88 families, including 50 cases (median age 55 years) with pancreatic cancer and 135 controls (median age 64 years) without pancreatic cancer. Allelic odds ratios per SNP were calculated. No significant association with pancreatic cancer was found for any of the seven SNPs. Since genetic modifiers for developing melanoma have already been identified in CDKN2A mutation carriers, this study does not exclude that genetic modifiers do not play a role in the individual pancreatic cancer risk in this cohort of p16-Leiden germline mutation carriers. The search for these modifiers should therefore continue, because they can potentially facilitate more targeted pancreatic surveillance programs.
    Preview · Article · Jun 2015 · BMC Research Notes
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    ABSTRACT: Despite intensive surveillance, a high rate of interval malignancies is still seen in women at increased breast cancer risk. Therefore, novel screening modalities aiming at early detection remain needed. The intraductal approach offers the possibility to directly sample fluid containing cells, DNA and proteins from the mammary ductal system where, in the majority of cases, breast cancer originates. Fluid from the breast can non-invasively be obtained by oxytocin-assisted vacuum aspiration, called nipple fluid aspiration (NFA). The goal of this feasibility study was to evaluate the potential of repeated NFA, which is a critical and essential step to evaluate its possible value as a breast cancer screening method. In this multicenter, prospective study, we annually collected nipple fluid for up to 5 consecutive years from women at increased breast cancer risk, and performed a questionnaire-based survey regarding discomfort of the aspiration. Endpoints of the current interim analyses were the feasibility and results of 994 NFA procedures in 451 women with total follow-up of 560 person years of observation. In this large group of women at increased risk of breast cancer, repetitive NFA appeared to be feasible and safe. In 66.4% of aspirated breasts, nipple fluid was successfully obtained. Independent predictive factors for successful NFA were premenopausal status, spontaneous nipple discharge, smaller breast size, bilateral oophorectomy and previous use of hormone replacement therapy or anti-hormonal treatment. The procedure was well tolerated with low discomfort. Drop-out rate was 20%, which was mainly due to repeated unsuccessful aspiration attempts. Only 1.6% of women prematurely declined further participation because of side effects. Repeated NFA in women at increased breast cancer risk is feasible and safe. Therefore, NFA is a promising method to non-invasively obtain a valuable source of potential breast cancer specific biomarkers.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Germline CDH1 mutations confer a high lifetime risk of developing diffuse gastric (DGC) and lobular breast cancer (LBC). A multidisciplinary workshop was organised to discuss genetic testing, surgery, surveillance strategies, pathology reporting and the patient's perspective on multiple aspects, including diet post gastrectomy. The updated guidelines include revised CDH1 testing criteria (taking into account first-degree and second-degree relatives): (1) families with two or more patients with gastric cancer at any age, one confirmed DGC; (2) individuals with DGC before the age of 40 and (3) families with diagnoses of both DGC and LBC (one diagnosis before the age of 50). Additionally, CDH1 testing could be considered in patients with bilateral or familial LBC before the age of 50, patients with DGC and cleft lip/palate, and those with precursor lesions for signet ring cell carcinoma. Given the high mortality associated with invasive disease, prophylactic total gastrectomy at a centre of expertise is advised for individuals with pathogenic CDH1 mutations. Breast cancer surveillance with annual breast MRI starting at age 30 for women with a CDH1 mutation is recommended. Standardised endoscopic surveillance in experienced centres is recommended for those opting not to have gastrectomy at the current time, those with CDH1 variants of uncertain significance and those that fulfil hereditary DGC criteria without germline CDH1 mutations. Expert histopathological confirmation of (early) signet ring cell carcinoma is recommended. The impact of gastrectomy and mastectomy should not be underestimated; these can have severe consequences on a psychological, physiological and metabolic level. Nutritional problems should be carefully monitored. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · Journal of Medical Genetics
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Previous studies have reported a breast cancer (BC) risk reduction of approximately 50% after risk-reducing salpingo-oophorectomy (RRSO) in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers, but may have been subject to several types of bias. The purpose of this nationwide cohort study was to assess potential bias in the estimated BC risk reduction after RRSO. Methods: We selected BRCA1/2 mutation carriers from an ongoing nationwide cohort study on Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer in the Netherlands (HEBON). First, we replicated the analytical methods as previously applied in four major studies on BC risk after RRSO. Cox proportional hazards models were used to calculate hazard ratios and conditional logistic regression to calculate odds ratios. Secondly, we analyzed the data in a revised design in order to further minimize bias using an extended Cox model with RRSO as a time-dependent variable to calculate the hazard ratio. The most important differences between our approach and those of previous studies were the requirement of no history of cancer at the date of DNA diagnosis and the inclusion of person-time preceding RRSO. Results: Applying the four previously described analytical methods and the data of 551 to 934 BRCA1/2 mutation carriers with a median follow-up of 2.7 to 4.6 years, the odds ratio was 0.61 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.35 to 1.08), and the hazard ratios were 0.36 (95% CI = 0.25 to 0.53), 0.62 (95% CI = 0.39 to 0.99), and 0.49 (95% CI = 0.33 to 0.71), being similar to earlier findings. For the revised analysis, we included 822 BRCA1/2 mutation carriers. After a median follow-up period of 3.2 years, we obtained a hazard ratio of 1.09 (95% CI = 0.67 to 1.77). Conclusion: In previous studies, BC risk reduction after RRSO in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers may have been overestimated because of bias. Using a design that maximally eliminated bias, we found no evidence for a protective effect.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · Journal of the National Cancer Institute
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    ABSTRACT: Female breast cancer patients carrying a BRCA1/2 mutation have an increased risk of second primary breast cancer. Rapid genetic counseling and testing (RGCT) before surgery may influence choice of primary surgical treatment. In this article, we report on the psychosocial impact of RGCT. Newly diagnosed breast cancer patients at risk for carrying a BRCA1/2 mutation were randomized to an intervention group (offer of RGCT) or a usual care control group (ratio 2:1). Psychosocial impact and quality of life were assessed with the Impact of Events Scale, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, Cancer Worry Scale, and the EORTC QLQ-C30 and QLQ-BR23. Assessments took place at study entry and at 6- and 12-month follow-up visits. Between 2008 and 2010, 265 patients were recruited into the study. Completeness of follow-up data was more than 90%. Of the 178 women in the intervention group, 177 had genetic counseling, of whom 71 (40%) had rapid DNA testing and 59 (33%) received test results before surgery. Intention-to-treat and per-protocol analyses showed no statistically significant differences between groups over time in any of the psychosocial outcomes. In this study, RGCT in newly diagnosed breast cancer patients did not have any measurable adverse psychosocial effects.Genet Med advance online publication 23 April 2015Genetics in Medicine (2015); doi:10.1038/gim.2015.50.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Genetics in medicine: official journal of the American College of Medical Genetics
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    Full-text · Dataset · Apr 2015
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    ABSTRACT: IMPORTANCE: Limited information about the relationship between specific mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2 (BRCA1/2) and cancer risk exists. OBJECTIVE:To identify mutation-specific cancer risks for carriers of BRCA1/2. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS:Observational study of women who were ascertained between 1937 and 2011 (median, 1999) and found to carry disease-associated BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations. The international sample comprised 19,581 carriers of BRCA1 mutations and 11,900 carriers of BRCA2 mutations from 55 centers in 33 countries on 6 continents. We estimated hazard ratios for breast and ovarian cancer based on mutation type, function, and nucleotide position. We also estimated RHR, the ratio of breast vs ovarian cancer hazard ratios. A value of RHR greater than 1 indicated elevated breast cancer risk; a value of RHR less than 1 indicated elevated ovarian cancer risk. EXPOSURES:Mutations of BRCA1 or BRCA2. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Breast and ovarian cancer risks. RESULTS:Among BRCA1 mutation carriers, 9052 women (46%) were diagnosed with breast cancer, 2317 (12%) with ovarian cancer, 1041 (5%) with breast and ovarian cancer, and 7171 (37%) without cancer. Among BRCA2 mutation carriers, 6180 women (52%) were diagnosed with breast cancer, 682 (6%) with ovarian cancer, 272 (2%) with breast and ovarian cancer, and 4766 (40%) without cancer. In BRCA1, we identified 3 breast cancer cluster regions (BCCRs) located at c.179 to c.505 (BCCR1; RHR = 1.46; 95% CI, 1.22-1.74; P = 2 × 10(-6)), c.4328 to c.4945 (BCCR2; RHR = 1.34; 95% CI, 1.01-1.78; P = .04), and c. 5261 to c.5563 (BCCR2', RHR = 1.38; 95% CI, 1.22-1.55; P = 6 × 10(-9)). We also identified an ovarian cancer cluster region (OCCR) from c.1380 to c.4062 (approximately exon 11) with RHR = 0.62 (95% CI, 0.56-0.70; P = 9 × 10(-17)). In BRCA2, we observed multiple BCCRs spanning c.1 to c.596 (BCCR1; RHR = 1.71; 95% CI, 1.06-2.78; P = .03), c.772 to c.1806 (BCCR1'; RHR = 1.63; 95% CI, 1.10-2.40; P = .01), and c.7394 to c.8904 (BCCR2; RHR = 2.31; 95% CI, 1.69-3.16; P = .00002). We also identified 3 OCCRs: the first (OCCR1) spanned c.3249 to c.5681 that was adjacent to c.5946delT (6174delT; RHR = 0.51; 95% CI, 0.44-0.60; P = 6 × 10(-17)). The second OCCR spanned c.6645 to c.7471 (OCCR2; RHR = 0.57; 95% CI, 0.41-0.80; P = .001). Mutations conferring nonsense-mediated decay were associated with differential breast or ovarian cancer risks and an earlier age of breast cancer diagnosis for both BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: Breast and ovarian cancer risks varied by type and location of BRCA1/2 mutations. With appropriate validation, these data may have implications for risk assessment and cancer prevention decision making for carriers of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association

  • No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Gastroenterology
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    ABSTRACT: It is expected that rapid genetic counseling and testing (RGCT) will lead to increasing numbers of breast cancer (BC) patients knowing their BRCA1/2 carrier status before primary surgery. Considering the potential impact of knowing one’s status on uptake and timing of risk-reducing contralateral mastectomy (RRCM), we aimed to evaluate trends over time in RRCM, and differences between carriers identified either before (predictively) or after (diagnostically) diagnosis. We collected data from female BRCA1/2 mutation carriers diagnosed with BC between 1995 and 2009 from four Dutch university hospitals. We compared the timing of genetic testing and RRCM in relation to diagnosis in 1995–2000 versus 2001–2009 for all patients, and predictively and diagnostically tested patients separately. Of 287 patients, 219 (76 %) had a diagnostic BRCA1/2 test. In this cohort, the median time from diagnosis to DNA testing decreased from 28 months for those diagnosed between 1995 and 2000 to 14 months for those diagnosed between 2001 and 2009 (p < 0.001). Similarly, over time women in this cohort underwent RRCM sooner after diagnosis (median of 77 vs. 27 months, p = 0.05). Predictively tested women who subsequently developed BC underwent an immediate RRCM significantly more often than women who had a diagnostic test (21/61, 34 %, vs. 13/170, 7.6 %, p < 0.001). Knowledge of carrying a BRCA1/2 mutation when diagnosed with BC influenced decisions concerning primary surgery. Additionally, in more recent years, women who had not undergone predictive testing were more likely to undergo diagnostic DNA testing and RRCM sooner after diagnosis. This suggests the need for RGCT to guide treatment decisions. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s10689-015-9788-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · Familial Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Annual MRI and mammography is recommended for BRCA12 mutation carriers to reduce breast cancer mortality. Less intensive screening is advised ≥60 years, although effectiveness is unknown. We identified BRCA1/2 mutation carriers without bilateral mastectomy before age 60 to determine for whom screening ≥60 is relevant, in the Rotterdam Family Cancer Clinic and HEBON: a nationwide prospective cohort study. Furthermore, we compared tumour stage at breast cancer diagnosis between different screening strategies in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers ≥60. Tumours>2 cm, positive lymph nodes, or distant metastases at detection were defined as ‘unfavourable’. Of 548 BRCA1/2 mutation carriers ≥60 years in 2012, 395 (72%) did not have bilateral mastectomy before the age of 60. Of these 395, 224 (57%) had a history of breast or other invasive carcinoma. In 136 BRCA1/2 mutation carriers, we compared 148 breast cancers (including interval cancers) detected ≥60, of which 84 (57%) were first breast cancers. With biennial mammography 53% (30/57) of carcinomas were detected in unfavourable stage, compared to 21% (12/56) with annual mammography (adjusted odds ratio: 4·07, 95% confidence interval [1·79-9·28], p=0·001). With biennial screening 40% of breast cancers were interval cancers, compared to 20% with annual screening (p=0·016). Results remained significant for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers, and first breast cancers separately. Over 70% of 60-year old BRCA1/2 mutation carriers remain at risk for breast cancer, of which half has prior cancers. When life expectancy is good, continuation of annual breast cancer screening of BRCA1/2 mutation carriers ≥60 is worthwhile. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2014 · International Journal of Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Background: BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutation carriers are at substantially increased risk for developing breast and ovarian cancer. The incomplete penetrance coupled with the variable age at diagnosis in carriers of the same mutation suggests the existence of genetic and non-genetic modifying factors. In this study we evaluated the putative role of variants in many candidate modifier genes. Methods: Genotyping data from 15,252 BRCA1 and 8,211 BRCA2 mutation carriers, for known variants (n=3,248) located within or around 445 candidate genes, were available through the iCOGS custom-designed array. Breast and ovarian cancer association analysis was performed within a retrospective cohort approach. Results: The observed p-values of association ranged between 0.005-1.000. None of the variants was significantly associated with breast or ovarian cancer risk in either BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers, after multiple testing adjustments. Conclusion: There is little evidence that any of the evaluated candidate variants act as modifiers of breast and/or ovarian cancer risk in BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation carriers. Impact: Genome-wide association studies have been more successful at identifying genetic modifiers of BRCA1/2 penetrance than candidate gene studies.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention
  • Akke Albada · Sandra van Dulmen · Peter Spreeuwenberg · Margreet G E M Ausems
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    ABSTRACT: Pre-counseling education helps counselees to prepare for breast cancer genetic counseling and might subsequently result in more positive experiences, improved cognitive outcomes and more experienced control. This study assessed the effects of a website with tailored information and a blank sheet to fill in questions (question prompt; QP), at 1 week and 1 year post-counseling. Consecutive counselees were randomized to the usual care group (UC) or the intervention group (UC+website+QP). Counselees completed questionnaires pre- and post-counseling and 1 year follow-up. We conducted multilevel regression analyses corrected for time. Intervention group counselees (n=103) were more satisfied about their final visit (β=.35; CI: .06-.65; P=.02; n=156) than UC group counselees (n=94). Intervention group counselees also reported more positive experiences with the counseling (β=.32; CI: .06-.59; P=.02; n=188) and higher perceived personal control 1 year post-counseling (β=.51; CI: .18-.84; P=.002; n=193). No significant effects were found on recall, knowledge, anxiety, cancer worry, risk perception alignment and adherence to breast surveillance advice. This study shows that pre-counseling education providing tailored information and QP, might lead to improvements in experiences with the counseling and perceived personal control 1 year post-counseling. Online pre-visit information is a feasible tool to enhance counselees' experiences. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2014 · Patient Education and Counseling
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    ABSTRACT: Background:We aimed to quantify previously observed relatively high cancer risks in BRCA2 mutation carriers (BRCA2 carriers) over 60 in the Northern Netherlands, and to analyze whether these could be explained by mutation spectrum or population background risk. Methods:This consecutive cohort study included all known pathogenic BRCA1/2 carriers in the Northern Netherlands (N = 1,050). Carrier and general reference populations were: BRCA1/2 carriers in the rest of the Netherlands (N = 2,013) and the general population in both regions. Regional differences were assessed with hazard ratios (HRs) and odds ratios (ORs). HRs were adjusted for birth year and mutation spectrum. Results:All BRCA1 carriers and BRCA2 carriers under age 60 had a significantly lower breast cancer risk in the Northern Netherlands, HRs were 0.66 and 0.64, respectively. Above age 60, the breast cancer risk in BRCA2 carriers in the Northern Netherlands was higher than in the rest of the Netherlands (HR = 3.99, 95% CI 1.11-14.35). Adjustment for mutational spectrum changed the HRs for BRCA1, BRCA2 <60 and BRCA2 ≥60 years by -3%, +32% and +11% to 0.75, 0.50 and 2.61, respectively. There was no difference in background breast cancer incidence between the two regions (OR = 1.03, 95% CI 0.97-1.09). Conclusions:Differences in mutation spectrum only partly explain the regional differences in breast cancer risk in BRCA2 carriers, and for an even smaller part in BRCA1 carriers. Impact:The increased risk in BRCA2 carriers over 60 may warrant extension of intensive breast screening beyond age 60.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2014 · Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention
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    ABSTRACT: IntroductionApproximately 70% of counselees undergoing cancer genetic counseling and testing (CGCT) experience some degree of CGCT-related psychosocial problems. We evaluated the efficacy of an intervention designed to increase detection and management of problems four weeks after completion of CGCT.Methods In this randomized, controlled trial, 118 participants completed a CGCT-related problem questionnaire prior to an -audiotaped- telephone session with their counselor one month after DNA-test disclosure. For those randomized to the intervention group (n = 63), a summary of the questionnaire results was provided to the counselor prior to the telephone session. Primary outcomes were discussion of the problems, counselors’ awareness of problems, and problem management. Secondary outcomes included self-reported distress, cancer worries, CGCT-related problems, and satisfaction.ResultsCounselors who received a summary of the questionnaire were more aware of counselees’ problems in only one psychosocial domain (practical issues). No significant differences in the number of problems discussed, in problem management, or on any of the secondary outcomes were observed. The prevalence of problems was generally low.Conclusions The telephone session, combined with feedback on psychosocial problems, has minimal impact. The low prevalence of psychosocial problems one month post-CGCT recommends against its use as a routine extension of the CGCT procedure.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2014 · Clinical Genetics

Publication Stats

3k Citations
684.57 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1995-2015
    • Utrecht University
      • • Department of Medical Genetics
      • • Department of Neurology
      Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • 1994-2015
    • University Medical Center Utrecht
      • • Division Biomedical Genetics
      • • Department of Medical Genetics
      Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands
  • 2013
    • Netherlands Cancer Institute
      Amsterdamo, North Holland, Netherlands
  • 2010
    • University of Groningen
      Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands