Mary, Sandra and Kerry are three sisters who have joined the 100,000 Genomes Project in the East of England.
All three sisters were diagnosed with breast cancer within 15 months of each other.
Mary (61), Sandra (54) and Kerry (46) signed up to the Project through University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust in order to understand more about their conditions, and how their families might be affected.
Mary lives in Northampton and is a retired social worker. “I was diagnosed in 2013 just after I retired. Then it was Kerry in January 2014, who still has children at school. It was horrendous. Then Sandra in February 2015. You just wonder when it’s all going to end. We’re all keen to take part. Finding out more opens it all up for the rest of our family.”
“It’s classed as the beginning of the end of chemotherapy,” said Dr Julian Barwell, a consultant in clinical genetics at the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust.
“This is the first step for the NHS into genomic medicine. If successful it will give individual tumour profiles and identify which drugs are likely to benefit you. It’s hugely exciting.”