About BFOR

The BRCA Founder Outreach (BFOR) Study is a new research initiative. It will pioneer new ways to integrate genetic testing into medical care. This model combines the convenience of direct-to-consumer genetic tests along with the advantages of receiving testing with the guidance of a medical care provider. 

BFOR seeks to increase access to testing for one of the most common tests for hereditary cancer, BRCA genetic mutations. These mutations of BRCA genes are associated with greater risks for several types of cancer, including breast, ovarian, and prostate cancer.

BFOR will provide patients, families, and their doctors with better information to make important decisions about their health care. This information will help thousands of people to reduce their cancer risks. 

The study will offer BRCA genetic testing to women and men of Ashkenazi (Eastern European) Jewish ancestry, age 25 or older. This group is at least ten times more likely than the general population to inherit certain kinds of BRCA mutations. 

BFOR will explore how our health care system can use genetic testing in new ways to improve and personalize medical care in the future.

BFOR offers BRCA genetic testing at no cost to participants. The pilot phase of the BFOR study will launch in the fall of 2017 in the New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles metropolitan areas. BFOR may expand to other areas in the United States in the future. 

BFOR Leadership

BFOR is an independent research initiative, directed by leading experts in the fields of cancer research and genetics. BFOR team members have led efforts to identify genetic changes that cause cancer. They have also developed approaches to early detection, prevention, and treatment. 

The study is made possible by the generosity of individual philanthropists.

BFOR Executive Committee

Kenneth Offit, MD, MPH: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York City

Mark Robson, MD: Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York City

Beth Karlan, MD: Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles

Judy Garber, MD, MPH: Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston

Susan Domchek, MD: Basser Center for BRCA, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

Katherine L. Nathanson, MD: Abramson Cancer Center and Basser Center for BRCA, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia

Nadine Tung, MD: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, Boston

Jeremy N. Block, PhD, MPP: Executive Director, Ex Officio

BFOR Scientific Advisory Board

Stephen J. Chanock, MD, Director, National Cancer Institute, Division of Cancer Epidemiology & Genetics

Mary Freivogel, MS, CGC, President, National Society of Genetic Counselors

Ian Jacobs BA, MA, MBBS, MD, FRCOG, President and Vice-Chancellor, University of New South Wales

Susan L. Neuhausen, PhD

  • The Morris & Horowitz Families Professor in Cancer Etiology & Outcomes Research
  • Director, Division of Biomarkers of Early Detection and Prevention, Department of Population Sciences
  • Co-leader, Cancer Control and Population Sciences Program, Comprehensive Cancer Center City of Hope

Eileen E. Reynolds, MD

  • Chief, Division of General Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  • Vice Chair for Education, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
  • Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
  • Immediate-Past President of the Society of General Internal Medicine

BFOR Community Advisory Board

Andrew Abramson: Co-Founder/Treasurer, Cure Breast Cancer Foundation

Elana Silber: Executive Director, Sharsheret

Douglas S. Rabin MD: Reproductive Endocrinologist, Ob/Gyn

Julie Somers and Barry Shrage: Combined Jewish Philanthropies

Tresa Grauer: Jewish Reconstructionist Communities - Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

Jay Sanderson and Julie Platt: The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles

Valerie Lowenstein: Hadassah, The Women’s Zionist Organization of America, Inc.

Robin Ballin: JCC Association of North America

Sue Friedman, DVM: Executive Director,FORCE

Rabbi Lisa Gelber: Congregation Habonim  New York, NY

BFOR Community Partnerships

UJA-Federation of New York

OneinForty

Temple Emanuel Beverly Hills

Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia

Temple Beth Zion – Beth Israel

Samost Jewish Family and Children Services

Marjorie B. Cohen Foundation

Force Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered

Force Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered