Germline mutations in the tumor suppressor genes BRCA1 and BRCA2 predispose to familial breast and/or ovarian cancer. The lifetime risk of members of families with genetic predisposition depends on the mutations of susceptibility genes. BRCA1 mutations seem to confer the highest risk of developing neoplastic diseases.
Apart from breast and ovarian cancer mutations in BRCA, related pathways are supposed to confer a smaller risk for additional cancers (colon, melanoma, pancreas, lymphoma, prostate, liver). All these tumors have an inherited component not necessarily associated with genetic susceptibility to BRCA genes.
To date he main focus of this review has been argued still with difficulty. Just a deeper and complete evaluation of the topic will allow to establish how much is the contribution of BRCA mutations in different types of cancers other than breast and ovary.