Wendy Conlon, MS, CGC, is a genetic counselor board certified by the American Board of Genetic Counseling and licensed in California. She received her MS in genetics from the University of Arizona’s genetic counseling program in 2000, and received her BA from the University of Vermont in 1988. Before attending graduate school, she worked in a laboratory at the University of Vermont Cancer Center and performed genetic testing for hereditary cancer predisposition for Lynch syndrome, retinoblastoma, Li-Fraumeni syndrome and others. Prior to coming to UCLA, her career as a genetic counselor has included over 12 years in the biotechnology industry working with physicians, scientists and patients in the development and provision of genetic testing, focusing on hereditary cancer and endocrinology. She has also worked as a clinical genetic counselor in varied settings, including adult cancer genetics, assisted reproductive technology and prenatal and preconception genetics.
Wendy is currently one of two genetic counselors that are part of the Integrated Practice Unit (IPU) at the UCLA Agi Hirshberg Center for Pancreatic Diseases. With approximately 5 to 10 percent of pancreatic cancers linked to an inherited cancer predisposition, the IPU offers genetic testing and counseling. A genetic counselor can assess the likelihood that pancreatic cancer in a family is due to an inherited mutation and help to understand personal and family history with pancreatic, and all cancers. Results from genetic testing may also be used to devise tailored surveillance and risk reduction strategies for at-risk family members.