Intermountain's precision genomics arm begins tests to identify hereditary cancer genes

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Salt Lake City-based Intermountain Healthcare plans to offer hereditary cancer gene panels through the Intermountain Precision Genomics Core Laboratory in St. George, Utah, the health system announced Feb. 1.

Intermountain Precision Genomics has developed and launched several tests to identify genetic variants associated with hereditary cancers. Recent research has suggested an unmet need for genetic tests to screen women with a family history of breast and ovarian cancers, according to Amber Guidry, PhD, a scientist at Intermountain Precision Genomics.

Dr. Guidry's work focuses on validating clinical genomics tests to detect the presence of mutations in genes passed from one generation to the next. Intermountain Healthcare's cancer genetic counseling services works to identify and educate patients with a history of cancer to reduce their risk of developing the disease.

Brent Hafen, who directs cancer genetic counseling for Intermountain Healthcare, explained, "Genetic counseling in association with genetic testing allows individuals with an increased cancer risk to obtain more frequent screenings at younger ages leading to earlier detection and treatment of many cancers."

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