Genome-wide scans for disease-causing genes have been touted by some
proponents as the future of medicine. But will the vast and potentially ambiguous
data they provide be too much for patients and their physicians to handle?
To begin to answer this and other questions about how to translate genomics
into clinical practice, the National Human Genome Research Institute is embarking
on a pilot study. The effort, which is still in the planning stages, will
involve enlisting healthy adult volunteers and sequencing a panel of 100 to
300 genes that have been associated with various disease phenotypes. Participants
will also undergo a physical examination and a battery of tests. The collected
information will be used to inform the individuals about potential genetic
risk factors in their genome.
Kuehn BM. Genetic Information: How Much Can Patients Handle?. JAMA. 2005;294(3):295-296. doi:10.1001/jama.294.3.295