Category: personal genomics
How Genetic Counselors are Dealing with Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing
After receiving ancestry information from a direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing company, Ellen Matloff, a certified genetic counselor and frequent writer about the limitations of DTC tests, downloaded her raw data file from their website for interpretation by a third party service. She was shocked to see that her raw data included a variant for Lynch Read More >Posted on by Leave a comment
Direct to Consumer Genetic Testing: Think Before You Spit, 2017 Edition!
As people have become more proactive in managing their health, personal genomic direct to consumer (DTC) testing has become more popular over the past decade. These tests allow consumers to access information about genetic predispositions and response to chemicals and medications without the involvement of healthcare providers. With the expanding landscape of such testing, the Read More >Posted on by 14 Comments
The Ultimate Selfie
Now within reach, our personal genomic sequence offers an incredible reflection of who we are, and great promise to improve human health, but there are serious concerns about embracing it too quickly. Empowered Consumers in the Era of Me If social media is any indication, we, like Narcissus of ancient myth, are surely self-obsessed creatures. Read More >Posted on by 3 Comments
Nobody is average but what to do about it? The challenge of individualized disease prevention based on genomics
Each week, Garrison Keillor shares with National Public Radio listeners the latest news from Lake Wobegon where “all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.” The concept of “average” is deeply rooted in our scientific analysis of all health related traits such as height, Read More >Posted on by Leave a comment
When Should We All Have Our Genomes Sequenced?
Recently, George Church, a prominent genomics researcher and leader of the Personal Genome Project asked why so few people are opting to inspect their genome. The cost and accuracy of genome sequencing have certainly improved dramatically. He clearly sees the health benefits of whole genome sequencing. He states “we should avoid being judgmental of people Read More >Posted on by 2 Comments
Think After You Spit: Personal Genomic Tests May Offer a Teachable Moment
Personal genomic tests are now widely available and sold directly to consumers, but population-based data are limited on awareness, use and impact of these tests. In collaboration with 4 state public health genomics programs, we have recently reported on consumer awareness and use of personal genomic tests using the 2009 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Read More >Posted on by 1 Comment
Think (Again) Before You Spit: Readers Weigh In
We thank our readers for their thoughtful comments on our recent post, which discussed the validity and utility of personal genomic tests for improving health. Clearly, this topic engenders a range of reactions as reflected in a recent scientific discussion. Several people I know have sought testing for various reasons, including curiosity, genealogic research, or just Read More >Posted on by 1 Comment
Think Before You Spit: Do Personal Genomic Tests Improve Health?
Campaigns against public spitting in the 19th century were largely driven by concerns about the spread of tuberculosis. However, at the beginning of the 21st century, spitting seems to be making a comeback. Over the past few years, several companies have begun offering personal genomic tests online to the public. There have been famous images of Read More >Posted on by 11 Comments
What is Public Health Genomics? A Day in the Invisible Life of Public Health Genomics
Public health usually works behind the scenes and many people aren’t even aware of public health programs. When you get sick you visit your doctor and get advice and treatment to make you feel better. Doctors and other medical professionals work to improve health one person at a time, but public health professionals focus on improving Read More >Posted on by 11 Comments