Consumer DNA Tests Do Not Accurately Predict Disease

Consumer DNA Tests Do Not Accurately Predict Disease

Publication date: Dec 01, 2019

Our genome (the whole of our hereditary information, encoded in our DNA) contains about three billion genes.

However, there is no guarantee that direct-to-consumer DNA kits are capable of detecting all common single genetic mutations.

For example, the tests do not screen for all types of breast cancer, which can lead consumers to falsely conclude their risk of all breast cancers is low if their test results do not indicate a gene mutation associated with breast cancer.

At best, the types of DNA tests that provide information on single-mutation diseases should be accompanied by appropriate genetic counseling.

Since most diseases are based on multiple genes and environment, a genetics counselor can help put the test results into perspective.

Laws protecting consumers are evolving, but clearly, at-home DNA tests expose consumers to unknown and, perhaps, unintended consequences.

DNA tests were first pitched to consumers as a way in which they could learn about their ancestry.

Concepts Keywords
Anemia Genetic testing
Asian Breast cancer
Asparagus Mutation
Benign Genetic counseling
Breast Hereditary cancers
Breast Cancer Medical tests
Cilantro RTT
Companies Law Medical genetics
Cystic Fibrosis Medicine
DNA Branches of biology
Gene Counseling
Genetic Hereditary information
Genetic Counseling Genetic counseling diseases
Genetic Mutations Single mutation diseases
Single Gene Disorders
Unintended Consequences


Type Source Name
disease MESH breast cancer
pathway KEGG Breast cancer
disease MESH cancers
disease MESH multiple
drug DRUGBANK Tropicamide
disease MESH Privacy
disease MESH prostate cancers
disease MESH sickle cell anemia
disease MESH cystic fibrosis
disease MESH phenylketonuria
pathway REACTOME Phenylketonuria

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