23andMe Has a New Genetic Cancer Test. But the Results Don ’t Tell You the Whole Story

Consumer genetics company 23andMe is diving deeper into the medical space. On Jan. 22, the company announced that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved its newest report, which can flag whether people have genetic variants that may raise their risk of developing colorectal cancer. The new test looks for two gene variants associated with MUTYH-associated polyposis, an inherited colorectal cancer syndrome. “If left unchecked, carrying both of these variants or having two copies of one increases the risk of developing colorectal cancer to between 43 and 100 percent,” according to 23andMe. The test will be available as part of 23andMe’s Health and Ancestry spit test (which costs $199), but as with many of the company’s more sensitive reports, users must opt in to receive their results. “For people who get that two-variant result, this can be absolutely life-saving,” says Jamaica Perry, senior product scientist at 23andMe. “Colorectal cancer is something that can get pretty far along before somebody might notice symptoms of it. If somebody finds out in their 20s or 30s that they have this increased risk, that could actually help them set up a surveillance plan with their doctor and give them a much better life.” But a simple genetic test doesn’t tell the whole story. The vast majority of colorectal cancers aren’t caused by known genetic factors, so a person who doesn’t test positive for these variants may...
Source: TIME: Health - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized Cancer healthytime Source Type: news

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