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This March, JScreen highlights rare cancer disorders

Genetic testing can save a person’s life.

JScreen, a national nonprofit public health initiative dedicated to preventing genetic diseases and hereditary cancer, encourages the public to learn about Li-Fraumeni Syndrome and triple-negative breast cancer.

Li-Fraumeni Syndrome (LFS) is one of 7,000 rare diseases that affect 25 to 30 million Americans. LFS significantly increases the risk in affected individuals of developing cancer, often resulting in repeated cancer diagnoses throughout their lifetime. Similarly, triple-negative breast cancer is a rare cancer that affects about 13 in 100,000 women each year, representing about 15% of all invasive breast cancers.

Genetic testing for heredity cancer can save a person’s life. Knowing someone’s genetic risks can greatly impact their decisions about cancer screening, prevention, and treatment. JScreen’s CancerGEN test allows easy and accessible screening of 60-plus cancer genes that increase the risk for many types of cancer, LFS and triple-breast cancer included.

“I discovered I have Li-Fraumeni syndrome after my fourth cancer diagnosis in April 2010. At the time, I was only 26. Before that, I had been treated for adrenal cancer, breast cancer, and melanoma. The first diagnosis happened when I was just a toddler,” explains Lainie Jones, associate director of the American Cancer Society, a survivor of Li-Fraumeni Syndrome, and an advocate for JScreen’s CancerGEN test.

“I realize that having five different types of cancer before age 35 sounds crazy,” she continues. ”But that’s a hallmark of Li-Fraumeni, and that’s why finding out I had this rare disorder was so important—because when you’re much more likely to develop cancer, getting regular screenings and watching for symptoms can help your doctors find cancer earlier when it’s most treatable.

Jones adds that “JScreen’s CancerGEN test is such an amazing resource because it offers accessible at-home cancer genetic testing that will determine your risk for hereditary cancer disorders like Li-Fraumeni in record time.”

According to Melissa Berry, board chair of the Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Foundation, founder of Cancer Fashionista and a JScreen advocate, “I am living proof that genetic testing can save your life. If I didn’t get tested for the BRCA gene, I wouldn’t have been closely monitored, and I wouldn’t have been diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer at such an early stage. I consider myself very lucky, and it’s my obligation to share this knowledge with as many women as I can. My partnership with JScreen is a very natural one, as it underscores my passion for being proactive, knowing your family history and ensuring that genetic testing is accessible to everyone.” 

JScreen’s mission is to make comprehensive cancer genetic testing and counseling easy, accessible, and affordable. Its at-home saliva test uses state-of-the-art genetic sequencing technology to ensure highly accurate results. A unique feature o the process is that it provides access to licensed genetic counselors who are able to provide consults via phone or secure video conferencing to ensure that people understand their results and have clear next steps to be proactive with their medical management.

To learn more about testing, visit:  JScreen.org.

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