Quest Diagnostics announces the launch of a consumer-initiated genetic test, Genetic Insights, which will help consumers evaluate their risk of developing about 12 inheritable conditions, including some types of cancers and blood disorders.
"Genetic Insights goes beyond the typical consumer genetic test. The Quest team spent the past couple of years innovating not just the test, but the entire consumer experience to deliver comprehensive, complex genetic health data in a way that is digestible and actionable to the end user," says Sara South, Executive Scientific Director of R&D for Molecular Genetics and Oncology, Quest Diagnostics.
The test uses advanced next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology, which enables the analysis of thousands of DNA variants in genes linked to diseases. This technology examines a greater number of regions within an individual's genome compared to other alternatives, such as microarray testing technology. Overall, the new test aims to provide more comprehensive and detailed genetic information to individuals.
With Genetic Insights, individuals can collect a saliva sample at home and send it back to the company for analysis. An independent physician orders the test, provides personalized information and is available for consultation. The test results are typically provided within three to five weeks.
The Genetic Insights kit provides an activation code that grants access to a personalized online dashboard. Through this dashboard, users can access educational materials on various health conditions, provide personal and family health history via a secure questionnaire, track the progress of their test kit and create a family health history chart to share with their doctor. The dashboard also offers highly visual genetic health reports that simplify complex genetic information, including details about the tested genes, limitations of the test, key takeaways and recommended next steps based on DNA and family history. Additionally, users can schedule a session with a certified genetic counselor at no extra charge to discuss the results, ask questions and receive guidance.
“Accurate diagnosis and comprehensive care are crucial. Laboratory testing, including genetic testing, can play an important role in achieving this,” Carlo Andrés Briones, Medical Director, Quest Diagnostics, tells MBN.
Moreover, Genetic Insights allows individuals to download and share their lab reports with their doctors, providing healthcare providers with access to detailed information. The lab reports contain quick reference guides that summarize key findings and include clinical guideline-based resources and recommendations. This feature aims to support and facilitate meaningful discussions between healthcare providers and patients.