Categories: social, technology
What? At the 9th Future of Genomic Medicine conference, Anne Wojcicki, co-founder of 23andMe, shared her company’s vision for “consumer-driven” direct-to-consumer genetic testing. The company offers home genetic test kits to screen for of complex genetic conditions. 23andMe is educating physicians to help them assist consumers in understanding their results. Wojcicki referenced over-the-counter medicine as a prime example of a successful approach for explaining complicated medical information in a clear and concise manner.
So what? Greater literacy of genetics will be needed if individuals and couples are to have the right conversations with their consultants (physicians, etc.). The field of reproductive genetics focuses on positive therapeutic interventions; however, decisions made possible in light of information gathered from genetic tests raise questions of ethics and value. On the other hand, if users agree to have their data used for research purposes, this could expedite the discovery of effective and lower costs treatments.
Source: Medscape - 23andMe Opens Up About Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing