Cancer Genetics

The Center for Cancer Risk Assessment provides comprehensive genetic counseling and testing services for those who may be at increased risk of hereditary cancer.
Request an Appointment

Talk to an access nurse today 877-789-6100


Some individuals have an increased risk of developing cancer based on their personal and/or family history. Several members, across generations, may be affected. The Center for Cancer Risk Assessment provides evaluation, counseling, testing and referral for appropriate ongoing monitoring, treatment and follow-up for hereditary cancers, including:

  • Breast
  • Gynecological cancers: ovarian, uterine and fallopian tube
  • Gastrointestinal: colon, rectal, pancreatic and gastric
  • Genitourinary: kidney
  • Endocrine: thyroid, pituitary and adrenal
  • Skin: melanoma

Our center also provides counseling and genetic testing for the following syndromes:

  • Hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome (including the BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations)
  • Cowden syndrome
  • Li-Fraumeni syndrome
  • Hereditary non-polyposis colorectal cancer syndrome (Lynch syndrome)
  • Colon polyp syndromes: familial adenomatous polyposis, MYH-associated polyposis, juvenile polyposis
  • Hereditary diffuse gastric cancer syndrome
  • Peutz-Jeghers syndrome
  • Von-Hipple-Lindau syndrome
  • Birg-Hogg-Dube syndrome
  • Hereditary paraganlioma syndrome
  • Multiple endocrine neoplasia, type 1 and type 2 syndrome
  • Hereditary leiomyomatosis and renal cell cancer syndrome
  • Hereditary papillary renal cell cancer syndrome
  • Familial atypical multiple mole melanoma syndrome

Developing Better Therapies through Research

Like all treatment centers within the Cancer Center, our program is highly involved in research. We lead and participate in studies to develop better understanding of the genetic causes of several cancer syndromes, as well as studies to advance cancer treatment and screenings.

Meet the Team

Multidisciplinary Patient Care

All patients of the Cancer Center are cared for by a multidisciplinary team of specialists and those who come to the Center for Cancer Risk Assessment are no exception. Our program includes:

  • Certified Genetic Counselors experienced in helping patients gather the information they need to make informed healthcare decisions
  • Access to psychiatrists and social workers to help cope with the emotional component of genetic testing
  • Collaborations with the Cancer Center’s expert medical staff
  • Collaborations with Mass General specialist outside the Cancer Center

See the complete team treating cancer genetics

Patient Education

Innovative Approaches Advance Clinical Care

In addition to the comprehensive services provided by the Center for Cancer Risk Assessment, patients in our program have access to all the resources of Massachusetts General Hospital. This allows every patient’s complete care to be coordinated by a multidisciplinary team of specialists all in one place.

Patients who learn they have a genetic predisposition to cancer have options that can also be fully managed within Mass General, including:

  • Ongoing surveillance and monitoring of status or precancerous conditions
  • Immediate action and treatment at the appropriate time
  • Genetics counseling and testing for family members
  • Prophylactic surgery, care and follow-up
  • Access to Massachusetts General Hospital Fertility Center's Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis Program, which helps couples with an increased risk for a specific genetic abnormality to have a child unaffected by that particular disease
  • Cancer treatment and follow-up

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies of new drugs, new combinations of drugs or already approved drugs being studied to treat patients in new/different ways. They may include new drug doses or new ways (schedules) to give the drugs. Clinical trials are run under strict guidelines. Their purpose is to help find out whether new cancer treatments are safe and effective or better than the standard (current) treatment. Cancer is increasingly becoming a disease in which the genetic make-up of each individual cancer drives therapy.

Find listings of our current Targeted Therapy Trials.


Contact Us

Cancer Center

  • Phone: 617-726-5130
Request an Appointment

Talk to an access nurse today 877-789-6100

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