Science Snippet: Genetic Testing

Soon parents having a baby can order a DNA report card for their newly-born offspring. The report will predict chances that the child, as an adult, will have addictive tendencies, suffer a heart attack, whether he or she will be prone to certain kinds of cancer, and also the report may identify polygenic risk scores and may let the parents know whether the offspring is likely to be smarter than average. If the baby is a female the parents may learn her chances of contracting breast cancer as an adult, and the report may also indicate risk factors for other disease states, such as Alzheimer’s disease. The question is: who wishes to know in advance that they may contract the disease? But if breast cancer is an issue, then one may wish to have more frequent breast screenings as an adult. (

Article Comments