Breast cancer susceptibility-A new look at an old model

Cancer Cell. 2002 Jun;1(5):411-2. doi: 10.1016/s1535-6108(02)00079-x.


A polygenic model in which many individually weak genes combine multiplicately to cause a 50-fold range of risk in the population explains several puzzling aspects of familial breast cancer epidemiology, including the very high risk in some families and the failure to identify important new genes since the discovery of BRCA1 and BRCA2.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Breast Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Breast Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Breast Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Checkpoint Kinase 2
  • Female
  • Genes, BRCA1 / physiology
  • Genes, BRCA2 / physiology
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease*
  • Genetics, Population
  • Humans
  • Models, Genetic
  • Mutation
  • Protein Kinases / genetics
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases*
  • Risk Factors


  • Protein Kinases
  • Checkpoint Kinase 2
  • CHEK2 protein, human
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases