Is-Genetic-Testing-Accurate

How Accurate Is Genetic Testing?

By Caitlin O’Brien, Genome Medical Genetic Counseling Intern 

Did you know that testing for genetic diseases has been around since as early as the 1950’s? (1) It has been quite an evolution since then. In the early years, testing rarely actually looked at your genes (more often tests were done to look for substances that accumulated in the body due to a genetic disease). Fast-forward 69 years and we can now look at the entire genome (all 20,000 genes) in just a few days or few weeks, for a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. You might think this is not such a big accomplishment—after all, 69 years is a long time—but it was only 16 years ago that scientists completed sequencing the first human genome, after spending 13 years and 2.7 billion dollars. Since then, genetic testing has exploded, with over 12 million tests being sold as of 2018.

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