Policy ForumGenetics

The Illusive Gold Standard in Genetic Ancestry Testing

Science  03 Jul 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5936, pp. 38-39
DOI: 10.1126/science.1173038

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Summary

Genetic ancestry testing is being applied in areas as diverse as forensics, genealogical research, immigration control, and biomedical research (13). Use of ancestry as a potential risk factor for disease is entrenched in clinical decision-making (4), so it is not surprising that techniques to determine genetic ancestry are increasingly deployed to identify genetic variants associated with disease and drug response (5). Recently, direct-to-consumer (DTC) personal genomics companies have used ancestry information to calculate individual risk profiles for a range of diseases and traits.