Background: To establish an individualized surgical strategy for lymphadenectomy in ovarian cancer patients with the germline BRCA1 and BRCA2 pathogenic variants (BRCA1+ and BRCA2+), we investigated the clinicopathological characteristics that are involved in the increased risk of lymph node metastasis. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the data of Japanese women registered in the database of the Japanese Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer Consortium, who underwent BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic testing. Results: We evaluated the predictors of lymph node metastasis in all patients with the information of age at the diagnosis, disease site, histological subtype, 2014 FIGO stage, personal breast cancer history and family history; 233, 153 and 32 patients in the BRCA- (no pathogenic variant), BRCA1+ and BRCA2+ groups, respectively. The prevalence of lymph node metastasis was not markedly different between BRCA- (20.0%), BRCA1+ (18.4%) and BRCA2+ (26.2%). Multivariate analysis revealed an absence of a family history of ovarian cancer as an independent predictor for an increased risk of lymph node metastasis in BRCA1+, and the prevalence of lymph node metastasis was 11.7 and 42.0% in the groups with and without a family history of ovarian cancer, respectively. This subgroup without a family history of ovarian cancer did not show any correlation with a particular variant of BRCA1, including two common variants of c.188 T > A and c.2800C > T. Conclusions: This study suggested that certain genetic factors related to the penetrance of hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome altered the frequency of lymph node metastasis in BRCA1+ ovarian cancer, and family history may be useful to personalize the indication of lymphadenectomy.
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