23andMe Now Provides Information on the Risks of 10 Genetic Diseases and Conditions
Today, the FDA has authorized 23andMe’s genetic testing service to begin marketing tests designed to provide you with risk information for several genetic conditions, including Parkinson’s disease, late-onset Alzheimer’s disease, and celiac disease.
The Personal Genome Service test for genetic health risks costs $ 200 and seeks to find genetic variants associated with 10 major diseases . The idea is that you take the test and find out that you have a predisposition for certain conditions, after which you can make more informed decisions about your lifestyle, take preventive measures, and have more informed discussions with your doctor. The test looks for genetic variants associated with these diseases and conditions:
- Parkinson’s disease
- Late Alzheimer’s Disease
- Celiac disease
- Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency
- Primary dystonia with early onset
- Factor XI deficiency
- Gaucher disease type 1
- Deficiency of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase
- Hereditary hemochromatosis
- Hereditary thrombophilia
But as Dr. Jeffrey Schuren, director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, explains in a press release , these tests cannot determine your overall risk of developing these conditions, only that you have genetic variants that could put you at risk. … And that risk is just part of a much larger puzzle. Other factors, such as your lifestyle and environment, contribute to the development of these conditions.
However, this testing opens the door to greater awareness. 23andMe reports that the first set of tests will be released this month on their Health + Ancestry Service , with more to come as they become available. If you buy the service, you will receive these new tests when they are ready.