Dialog Box

Traceback Research Project

TRACEBACK aims to reduce the number of new ovarian and breast cancers diagnosed in Australia by identifying families that may have a hereditary risk of cancer development because of inherited gene changes (mutations) in BRCA1, BRCA2 and other cancer risk genes.

TRACEBACK is a ground-breaking study coordinated by Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in collaboration with Ovarian Cancer Australia, the Australian Ovarian Cancer Study (AOCS), Ovarian Cancer Prognosis and Lifestyle study (OPAL), the Australian Cancer Study (ACS) and major hospitals and research sites across the country.

 Read about the TRACEBACK study 

Genes of Interest

Mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2 and other genes that are involved in important DNA repair pathways in our cells, increase the lifetime risk of not only ovarian cancer but also several other cancers. The mutations are also linked to the occurrence of breast, prostate, colorectal and pancreatic cancers and are passed down through the family line by both male and female carriers.

BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations in particular are more common in ovarian cancer than any other cancer type. Therefore, women with ovarian cancer provide an important opportunity to identify carriers of these mutations.

Identifying a previously undetected mutation in one of these genes in a woman with ovarian cancer, allows more families to become aware of their heightened risk while also providing current and future generations the opportunity to adopt strategies to reduce their cancer risk.

Recruitment for this study is now closed. Final analysis and notification to participants of results is currently in process. If you have any questions please contact the TRACEBACK team at Traceback@petermac.org

TRACEBACK is an Australian Government funded initiative – a collaboration between Ovarian Cancer Australia (OCA), the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre (Peter Mac), other major hospitals and research sites across the country.


TRACEBACK.E (TRACEBACK Evaluation) is psychosocial investigation, designed to explore TRACEBACK participants’ experiences of receiving their genetic information, and to assess the acceptability and value of the TRACEBACK study. TRACEBACK.E will provide evidence regarding social and economic barriers to genetic testing, helping inform future clinical directives about the type and amount of support needed.


TRACKFORWARD is a government funded initiative and a collaboration between OCA and PMCC. TRACKFORWARD will monitor the emergence of genetic reversions in ovarian cancer patients identified to carry a BRCA1/2 mutation. Altering the genetic make-up of an individual’s cancer can change the way it responds to different treatments. Understanding the factors affecting the emergence of reversion mutations is likely to suggest approaches to limit their development, identify patients at most risk of developing treatment resistance, and help characterise new mechanisms of resistance in reversion-negative patients. Importantly, understanding the patterns of resistance and associated treatment responses will better inform clinicians in the management of patients with progressive disease.


For further information regarding TRACEBACK, TRACEBACK.E or Trackforward please contact the TRACEBACK team at Traceback@petermac.org