Differences in the characteristics of families with BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations in Israel

G. Rennert, S. Dishon, H. S. Rennert, F. Fares

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Three specific mutations in the BRCA1 (185de1AG, 5382insC) and BRCA2 (6174delT) genes have been reported to be of high prevalence in the Jewish Ashkenazi population. We studied the differences in phenotype of families carrying these mutations. All consecutive families found by the CHS Familial Cancer Service to carry one of the three 'Jewish' mutations of the BRCA1/BRCA2 genes were evaluated for phenotypic characteristics. Chi-squared and Student's t-test statistics were employed to study differences in a variety of clinical and demographic parameters. A total of 111 families with 1499 family members were included. Among them 454 cases of cancer (297 in breast/ovary) were reported. Ovarian cancer, but not breast cancer, was detected at a significantly younger age among carriers of 185delT compared with other mutation carriers. In families with 185delAG, 5382insC and 6174delT mutations, breast cancer was found in 20.2, 39.4 and 24.1% of all identified women (born between 1900 and 1975), correspondingly. The corresponding figures for ovarian cancer were 13.9, 6.8 and 4.9%. Families carrying the 5382insC mutation had the highest probability of expressing bilateral breast cancer (38.9% of families, 15.4% of women with cancer, 6.1% of all women in family) and metachronous breast and ovary tumours (22.2, 9.8 and 4.5% correspondingly). Other tumours were reported in 7.9, 9.1 and 12.0% of women and 9.5,12.9 and 15.8% of men in families with 185delAG, 5382insC, 6174delT, correspondingly. Marked phenotypic differences were found between families carrying different BRCA mutations warranting mutation-specific counselling to families seeking risk-reduction advice. 5382insC emerged as a most aggressive mutation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)357-361
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Cancer Prevention
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Ashkenazi Jews
  • BRCA
  • Gene mutations
  • Israel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Oncology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Cancer Research


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