Breast cancer: advances through risk-adjusted screening and prevention 2

Breast cancer: advances through risk-adjusted screening and prevention

06.11.2019 15:02

Breast cancer: advances through risk-adjusted screening and prevention

Cologne-led European Expert Group presents recommendations on the medical, ethical and legal challenges of genetic testing and risk determination

The European Risk Adjustment Prevention Expert Group (RiskAP) presented its findings and recommendations to the public in Berlin on 6 November at the final conference "Risk Adjusted Cancer Screening and Prevention: Integrating Predictions and Evidence in Digital Medicine". The panel dealt with the early detection and prevention of inherited tumors by breast cancer, funded by the Federal Ministry of Health.
At the heart of the recommendations is a multi-level concept for transferring research findings to clinical care. The concept allows for risk assessments, including genetic testing for breast cancer, while gathering evidence for their clinical benefit. Genetic tests will be incorporated into knowledge-based care that enables safe and quality controlled use of clinical care tests.
In recent years, numerous risk factors for solid tumors have been identified. In the foreground are mainly genetic changes, which can now be tested using multigenetic tests. Particularly in the field of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer, the individual risk profile for persons can now be calculated based on these risk data. Even early detection measures can better target vulnerable people who are either not covered by existing programs or are not adequately covered by them.
Although the impact of certain risk factors on the development of the disease is known and clinically proven, it is still unclear whether risk-adjusted prevention programs will reduce overall mortality in the long term and to what extent they have a positive impact on the quality of life of patients. Although the risks of the disease can be accurately assessed, it is still poorly understood how effective the clinical measures are. Therefore, the European Expert Group is developing new concepts to address new opportunities and their use for clinical care.
Since 2015, a European team of experts from the Center for Breast and Ovarian Cancer at the University of Cologne and the Cologne Center for Ethics, Law, Economics and Social Health Sciences (CEES) at the University of Cologne have been intensively working on medical, ethical and legal challenges facing Cologne University. Genestung and risk determination. It aims to develop a conceptual framework and set international standards that address the challenges of detecting and preventing risk-adjusted tumors using the example of breast cancer.
The initiator of the recommendation, Dr. Med. Rita Schmutzler, director of the Family Breast Cancer Center, emphasizes: "Risk-adjusted cancer prevention is the logical further development of organized cancer screening based on the latest technologies such as genomics. It has the potential for more effective cancer screening and even cancer prevention even before the onset of the disease. "
Professor Christiane Woopen, Director of Ceres and Head of Research Ethics at the University of Cologne: “Risk determination including genetic testing and resulting clinical measures require a comprehensive assessment. The Health Learning System aims to measure screening and prevention against the real benefits to women. "
Dr. Björn Schmitz-Luhn, Managing Director of Ceres at the University of Cologne, explains: “In addition, it is important to provide those who are dealing with new findings and options in an understandable form so that they can make an informed decision for or against the request. Above all, dealing with so-called 'healthy patients', that is, still healthy people at high risk of illness, illumination and respect for social justice. "
The expert group's recommendations have been published in an international scientific journal.
Andreas Kirchner
PR officer ceres
+49 221 470-89120
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Research / knowledge transfer, research results