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Survey Suggests Multigene Cancer Panel VUS Reporting May Vary Across Genetic Counselors

In a paper appearing in the Journal of Genetic Counseling, a research team from University of Southern California, the Keck Graduate Institute, City of Hope, and Invitae present data from a survey that included 87 clinical cancer genetic counselors (GCs) and 19 laboratory GCs, asking the participants to weigh in on options for reporting variants of uncertain significance (VUSs) unearthed with multigene testing on cancer panels. Both clinical cancer and laboratory GCs describe support for VUS reporting in this context, including VUSs falling beyond genes involved in the initial testing indication, though they often called for more detailed VUS clinical reporting guidelines and appeared to hold more variable attitudes related to reporting options around the specific VUS involved. "Further research is needed to elucidate GC preferences to help inform best practices for the reporting of VUSs," they note, adding that "the development of additional standardized guidelines on how to approach VUSs in clinical practice would be beneficial for GCs."

The Scan

Harvard Team Report One-Time Base Editing Treatment for Motor Neuron Disease in Mice

A base-editing approach restored SMN levels and improved motor function in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy, a new Science paper reports.

International Team Examines History of North American Horses

Genetic and other analyses presented in Science find that horses spread to the northern Rockies and Great Plains by the first half of the 17th century.

New Study Examines Genetic Dominance Within UK Biobank

Researchers analyze instances of genetic dominance within UK Biobank data, as they report in Science.

Cell Signaling Pathway Identified as Metastasis Suppressor

A new study in Nature homes in on the STING pathway as a suppressor of metastasis in a mouse model of lung cancer.