Mary-Claire King (1946– )
Mary-Claire King studied genetics in the US in the twenty-first century. King identified two genes associated with the occurrence of breast cancer, breast cancer 1 (BRCA1) and breast cancer 2 (BRCA2). King showed that mutated BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes cause two types of reproductive cancer, breast and ovarian cancer. Because of King’s discovery, doctors can screen women for the inheritance of mutated BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes to evaluate their risks for breast and ovarian cancer. King also demonstrated the genetic similarities between chimpanzees and humans and helped to identify victims of human rights abuses using genetics. King's identification of the BRCA genes and their relationship to breast and ovarian cancer, both reproductive cancers, has allowed physicians to screen thousands of women for the genes and for those women to choose to undergo preventative cancer treatment to lower their risk of cancer.