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Having to do with genes. Most genes are sequences of DNA that contain information for making specific RNA molecules or proteins that perform important functions in a cell. The information in genes is passed down from parent to child. Sometimes, certain changes in genes can affect a person’s risk of disease, such as cancer. These changes may be inherited or they may occur with age or exposure to environmental factors, such as diet, exercise, drugs, and chemicals.

Last updated: 2017-11-08

Source: The National Cancer Institute's Dictionary of Cancer Terms (