Predictive genetic tests that give you an insight into your risk of getting diseases in the future are gaining popularity.
Predictive genetic tests that give you an insight into your risk of getting diseases in the future are gaining popularity.(Photo: iStock)
  • 1. What is Genetic Testing?
  • 2. Are Genetic Tests Available in India? And What Can They...
  • 3. What All Can the Test Results Indicate?
  • 4. How Accurate and Useful Are the Tests?
  • 5. Is There a Drawback?
  • 6. Is Anyone Regulating the Rapidly-Growing Industry?
Would You Want to Know What Diseases You Can Get in the Future?

Fortune tellers, tarot readers, astrologers – they thrive because there’s a rush that people get in knowing about or “seeing” their future, whether they believe in it or not. It goes from matching kundlis to see if marriages will work, to reading horoscopes predicting what you’ll eat for lunch.

It’s no surprise then that some couples are undergoing few such future-predicting tests before getting married. The difference is that these are medical tests. Science doesn’t like to be left behind. We’ve gone from janampatri to ‘Genomepatri’.

Predictive genetic tests that give you an insight into your risk of getting diseases in the future are gaining popularity, and it’s not just the soon-to-be married who are flocking to them.

But how accurate are these tests? Are you being alarmist or being proactive? And just how do you handle a negative result?

  • 1. What is Genetic Testing?

    It’s based on the theory that the 23 pairs of chromosomes that you inherit from your parents influence more than just the way you look – these chromosomes define your health and what your body’s future will look like.

    The study of a person’s DNA to identify existing mutations or changes in the genes is called genetic testing. The tests help decode and understand our DNA composition as an individual.

    Predictive genetic tests that give you an insight into your risk of getting diseases in the future are gaining popularity.
    (Photo: iStock)

    Genetic tests can confirm or rule out a suspected genetic condition or help determine a person’s chance of developing or passing on a genetic disorder.

    In 2013, American actor Angelina Jolie made headlines after she underwent preventive surgeries to remove her breasts, uterus and fallopian tubes after a test showed she had the BRCA1 gene. The gene indicated that she had an 87 percent risk of contracting breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of getting ovarian cancer in the future.

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