Understanding What Genetic Testing is and why it is Done
Genetic testing is used in a number of different situations. The testing that is most commonly used to detect cancer risk is referred to as predictive gene testing. This test looks for gene mutations which may put an individual at risk of acquiring a disease. Genetic testing is generally recommended for an individual who has a medical family history of a particular disease.
For example, a woman whose sister and mother had breast cancer may be asked to get tested for changes in the BRCA1 & BRCA2 genes (breast cancer genes). But this is not the only reason why genetic testing could be used:
Types of Genetic Testing
All these types of genetic testing essentially look for any gene changes that have been passed-on from one generation onto the next. These changes can be found in every single cell in the body. With the exception of the screening tests used for newborns, these tests are primarily used for individuals who have certain diseases which run in their families.
Predictive Genetic Testing
Cancer-related genetic screening tests are typically actioned as predictive genetic tests. These may be used:
Testing Cancer Cells
In some cases, after an individual is diagnosed with cancer, his/her doctor orders tests that check for gene changes. A sample of the person’s cancer cells is tested and the results can give important information on that individual’s prognosis. At times, it can also help the doctors ascertain whether a particular type of treatment could be useful. These tests check for gene changes in the cancer cells that have been taken from the patient and are very different from the tests that are used to check for inherited cancer risk.
Benefits of Genetic Testing
Cancer has always been considered to be one of the most deadly diseases in the world and almost 70% of cancer deaths are reported in developing countries (A fifth of these come from India). As researchers conduct more studies about genes and their behavioural patterns, genetic testing will prove to be even more helpful in the prevention of deadly diseases such as cancer.
Thyroid Thyroid is the largest endocrine gland in the body. It is located in the neck, wrapped around the windpipe and …
Liver is the largest organ in the body and is located in the right upper quadrant of the abdomen &accounts …
May 8, 1974 - the day Anand Diagnostic Laboratory made a humble beginning on Infantry Road, Shivajinagar Bangalore. This was …