By Christina Bennett, MS
Germline PALB2 pathogenic variants were associated with an increased risk for female breast cancer, male breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and pancreatic cancer, and these risks varied by age, according to data from an international study recently that was published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
The study included 524 families made up of 17,906 individuals from 21 countries. Eligible families had at least 1 family member with a PALB2 pathogenic variant. Families with a known BRCA1/BRCA2pathogenic variant were excluded.
PALB2 pathogenic variants were associated with an estimated 7-fold higher relative risk (RR) of female breast cancer (RR, 7.18; 95% CI, 5.82-8.85; P =6.5 × 10-76), which decreased with age, from a RR of 13.10 at age 25 years to 4.69 at age 75 years (P =2.0 × 10-3). PALB2 pathogenic variants carried an absolute risk of 16.9% (95% CI, 13.3%-21.3%) of developing breast cancer by age 50 years and an absolute risk of 52.8% (95% CI, 43.7%-62.7%) of developing breast cancer by age 80 years.