Breast Cancer Treatment in Women with PALB2 Mutations

What is the study about and why is your participation important?

The Familial Breast Cancer Research Unit at Women’s College Hospital is conducting a research study to better understand breast cancer treatment among women with a PALB2 gene mutation.

Research shows that PALB2 mutations increase the risk of developing breast cancer; however, it is not clear how to best treat or reduce the risk of breast cancer in women with PALB2 mutations. Learning more about breast cancer among women with a PALB2 mutation will help to better understand:

  • The best treatment for women with a PALB2 mutation and breast cancer to increase the chance of survival
  • If women with a PALB2-associated breast cancer have an increased risk of developing a new breast cancer
  • How healthy family members who carry a PALB2 mutation can best manage their cancer risks (through screening, preventive surgery, etc.)

Through a better understanding of PALB2-associated breast cancer, we can personalize breast cancer treatment to increase survival and determine how to best manage at risk family members to detect cancer early or prevent it.

  • You are eligible to participate in this study if:
  • You are a woman who has a PALB2 mutation and
  • You were diagnosed with breast cancer in the year 2000 or later and
  • Breast cancer was your first diagnosis of cancer and
  • You can read and understand English.


If you choose to participate, you will be asked to:

  • Complete a consent form indicating your willingness to participate
  • Provide contact information for yourself and an alternate contact
  • Complete a questionnaire about your breast cancer at the beginning of the study and follow-up questionnaires every two years for 10 years to record and changes in your health (total of six questionnaires)
  • Provide your family history
  • Give permission to the study to collect medical records about your genetic test results and your cancer diagnosis and treatment

All study forms can be completed from home, either online or through the mail. You will not be asked to come into the hospital for any in person visits.

If you are interested in participating or learning more about the PALB2 Study, please contact the study team by emailing or calling 416-323-6400 ext. 2749.