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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 91

of 'Prevalence of BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations and associated cancer risks'

Skin cancer risk in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers.
Gumaste PV, Penn LA, Cymerman RM, Kirchhoff T, Polsky D, McLellan B
Br J Dermatol. 2015;172(6):1498.
Women with BRCA1/2 mutations have an elevated risk of breast and ovarian cancer. These patients and their clinicians are often concerned about their risk for other cancers, including skin cancer. Research evaluating the association between BRCA1/2 mutations and skin cancer is limited and has produced inconsistent results. Herein, we review the current literature on the risk of melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers in BRCA1/2 mutation carriers. No studies have shown a statistically significant risk of melanoma in BRCA1 families. BRCA2 mutations have been linked to melanoma in large breast and ovarian cancer families, though a statistically significant elevated risk was reported in only one study. Five additional studies have shown some association between BRCA2 mutations and melanoma, while four studies did not find any association. With respect to nonmelanoma skin cancers, studies have produced conflicting results. Given the current state of medical knowledge, there is insufficient evidence to warrant increased skin cancer surveillance of patients with a confirmed BRCA1/2 mutation or a family history of a BRCA1/2 mutation, in the absence of standard risk factors. Nonetheless, suspected BRCA1/2 mutation carriers should be counselled about skin cancer risks and may benefit from yearly full skin examinations.
The Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY, U.S.A.