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Attitudes toward genomic tumor profiling tests in Japan: patients, family members, and the public

Journal of Human Genetics (2019) | Download Citation


Genomic tumor profiling tests (GTPTs) to find molecular targeted drugs for patients with advanced cancer are being introduced into clinical settings, which may result in secondary germline findings. Although small-scale qualitative studies have revealed patients’ attitudes toward GTPTs and preferences on receiving germline findings, no large-scale quantitative research exists that includes family members. We conducted anonymous surveys with 757 cancer patients (CPs), 763 family members (FMs), and 3697 general adults (GAs) in Japan. Awareness of GTPTs was low in all groups, however, both CPs and FMs showed a higher degree of recognition in the benefits of GTPTs. FMs wanted information on germline findings to be shared more than the CPs. Since advanced CPs may have psychological burdens that make it difficult to express their opinions on their therapeutic options and sharing germline findings, GTPTs should be offered with advanced care planning for patients.

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We express our gratitude to all the survey participants. This research was supported by AMED under grant number JP18cm0106001, and JSPS KAKENHI Grant Number JP15H05913, JP18K09940.

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  1. Department of Public Policy, The Institute of Medical Sciences, The University of Tokyo, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan

    • Akiko Nagai
    •  & Kaori Muto
  2. Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies, The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan

    • Izen Ri
  3. Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Tokyo, Japan

    • Izen Ri


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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Kaori Muto.

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