Hereditary Cancer and Genetic Testing

General information for people with inherited BRCA1 mutations

Both men and women can carry a mutation in the BRCA1 gene. 

People with an inherited mutation in BRCA1 have increased risk for certain cancers. See our Cancer Risk section for more information. There are guidelines for screening and prevention for certain cancers in people with a BRCA1 mutation. Clinical trials may also be available for people who test positive for a BRCA1 mutation. See our Risk Management section for more information about screening options in people with BRCA1 mutations.

People with a BRCA1 mutation who have been diagnosed with cancer may qualify for specific treatments or clinical trials. Visit our Cancer Treatment section for more information about treatment clinical trials for people with a BRCA1 mutation.

Inheriting two mutations in BRCA1—one from each parent—causes a rare disease known as Fanconi anemia. See our Other Considerations section for more information about this disease.

BRCA1 mutations can be found in people of every race and ethnicity. However, people of Eastern European (Ashkenazi) Jewish ancestry are more likely to have an inherited BRCA1 mutation than people who are not of Jewish descent.

The name BRCA1 stands for "Breast Cancer 1." The gene is located on chromosome 17. BRCA1 helps to repair damaged DNA.





If you are a person with a BRCA1 mutation, you can find peer support through the following resources:

Last updated September 01, 2021