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Brain Tumor Family Study

Brain tumors are rare, and we don’t yet fully understand what causes them. Very few appear to be hereditary, yet most are associated with changes in an individual’s genes.

If you’re concerned about your own or your family’s risk of brain tumors and meet the study requirements, you may be eligible to participate in the Brain Tumor Family Study.

Your Genes and Cancer

From a blood sample, researchers may be able to determine whether you may be at increased risk of developing certain types of cancer. 

We inherit genes from our parents, and, over time, changes in our genes may occur.  These changes are called genetic alterations, and they may result in cancer. 

Certain genetic alterations may place some people at increased risk of developing cancer. This is why some cancers appear to run in a family. If you have a particular genetic alteration, you may be at increased risk for certain types of cancer.

Research Can Help Find the Answers

With the Brain Tumor Family Study, we may be able learn more about a possible gene(s) related to this disease—and then identify a genetic link among family members of brain tumor patients. 

Identifying a genetic link can provide information about the disease—information that one day we hope will lead to improved treatment, as well as preventive strategies.

Who is Eligible?

If your family has two or more biologically related family members (no in-laws) with brain tumors, you may be eligible to participate in the Brain Tumor Family Study. 

Requirements for Participation

If you decide to participate in this study, we’ll ask you to take part in a 90-minute research interview over the phone (or for MD Anderson patients, during a clinic visit).  Most of the interview questions are about your family’s medical history. Additionally, we may ask you and your family to participate in genetic testing (giving a small blood sample). 

Your Confidentiality is Assured

All information that you provide, as well as your blood sample results, will be completely confidential.  No one outside this study may have access to your information without your permission.

Questions About the Study

If you have any questions, call Phyllis Adatto at (713) 745-2489, or toll free at 1-800-248-4856, or e-mail her at padatto@mdanderson.org.

Those interested in participating in the Brain Tumor Family Study may submit information via the study registration form.

This study is a collaboration of MD Anderson’s Brain and Spine Center and Texas Children’s Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Division of Cancer Prevention
Department of Epidemiology
Melissa Bondy, Ph.D., Professor
Phyllis Adatto, M.S., Research Manager


© 2014 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center