Genetic testing and testing for , ovarian and primary peritoneal cancer
This section covers the following topics:
- Genetic testing for inherited mutations for treatment selection
- Tumor testing for treatment selection
Genetic tests for inherited mutations for treatment selection
All people diagnosed with ovarian cancer should be offered genetic testing for an . Genetic test results may be used to guide treatment selection for people diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
- People with advanced ovarian cancer who test positive for an inherited or mutation may benefit from treatment with a type of known as a .
- People who test positive for other inherited gene mutations may qualify for clinical trials looking at targeted therapies to treat hereditary ovarian cancer.
- People who test positive for a gene mutation may benefit from treatment with an agent.
tests look at samples of blood, tumor or other tissue for changes or abnormalities caused by cancer. These tests can give doctors clues about the cancer, including:
- how fast the cancer is growing
- which treatments are most likely to work
- whether or not the cancer is responding to treatment or growing
- whether or not the cancer has come back after remission
tests may be used to select treatments, and help patients avoid side effects from treatments that will not work for them. tests used to select a specific treatment are sometimes called companion diagnostic tests. These tests may be done on tumor tissue or (in many cases) on blood. See our Testing section for more information.
Biomarkers for treatment selection
Examples of tests used in , ovarian and primary peritoneal cancer include:
- Tests can be done to look for or gene mutations in the tumor. Women who test positive for a or mutation in their tumor may benefit from a type of therapy known as a . A tumor test positive for a or mutation in one of two situations:,
- when women who have an in or develop ovarian cancer, their tumor is very likely to display the same mutation.
- women who test negative for an in or may still develop an acquired mutation in their tumor. Women with a mutation in their tumor may also respond well to treatment.
- A tumor test for a marker called () can help women with advanced ovarian cancer learn if they may benefit from with a .
- Some ovarian cancers will have an abnormality known as (“ high") also known as "" ( or ). cancers are common in people with a gene mutation. These cancers may respond well to a type of treatment known as an immune checkpoint inhibitor. One example of an agent used for MSI-H cancers is Keytruda (pembrolizumab).
Biomarkers to monitor recurrence or response to treatment
CA125 is a type of protein that is produced in large amounts by some ovarian cancers. Doctors may use CA125 blood tests monitor recurrence or response to treatment.
Clinical trials are studying whether other blood tests known as liquid biopsies can be used to detect recurrence in people who have completed treatment for ovarian cancer. These tests check the blood for abnormal from tumor cells (known as circulating tumor or ).