DNA breast cancer risk 23andme now giving results

+4 votes

Indications for Use: The 23andMe Personal Genome Service (PGS) uses qualitative genotyping to detect select clinically relevant variants in genomic DNA isolated from human saliva collected from individuals ≥ 18 years with the Oragene Dx model OGD500.001 for the purpose of reporting and interpreting genetic health risks, including the 23andMe PGS Genetic Health Risk Report for BRCA1/BRCA2 (Selected Variants). The 23andMe PGS Genetic Health Risk Report for BRCA1/BRCA2 (Selected Variants) is indicated for reporting of the 185delAG and 5382insC variants in the BRCA1 gene and the 6174delT variant in the BRCA2 gene. The report describes if a woman is at increased risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, and if a man is at increased risk of developing breast cancer or may be at increased risk of developing prostate cancer. The three variants included in this report are most common in people of Ashkenazi Jewish descent and do not represent the majority of the BRCA1/BRCA2 variants in the general population. The test report does not describe a person’s overall risk of developing any type of cancer, and the absence of a variant tested does not rule out the presence of other variants that may be cancer-related. This test is not a substitute for visits to a healthcare provider for recommended screenings or appropriate follow-up and should not be used to determine any treatments. [https://mediacenter.23andme.com/press-releases/23andme-granted-first-fda-authorization-direct-consumer-genetic-test-cancer-risk/?utm_source=23andme&utm_medium=email&utm_content=23c_Email_Platform&utm_campaign=brcaannc​]

in The Tree House by Terry Fillow G2G6 Mach 4 (44.2k points)
edited by Ellen Smith

1 Answer

+2 votes
I pray this new test helps women get answers they need in order to take control of their health.
by Debbie Parsons G2G6 Pilot (139k points)
Debbie, we can all agree with that, but it's my understanding that this test worries some health providers.  It ONLY tests BRCA1 and BRCA2, and there are quite a few other genes and factors that are just as important.  As I understand it, after listening to a talk by a scientist/researcher on this, many women with the worst BRCA test results never get breast cancer, and others with the best results do get breast cancer.  All this test reveals is what your BRCA1 and BRCA2 reveals, not what your real cancer risk is.

The fear is that some will wrongly interpret the results, as in "my results are terrible, might as well cut them off", or the opposite "my results are great, never have to do a breast exam again".  Both are completely wrong.  Everyone with a breast has a breast cancer risk, women have a higher risk.  Bad BRCA1 and BRCA2 variants are just one factor, and shouldn't be over-hyped.  It's hard not to think 23 and Me found a market opportunity, playing on natural fears.

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