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Study Questions Genetic Screening for Treatable Diseases
Date:9/18/2007

ing for Gaucher disease will likely do more harm than good."

Zuckerman and his colleagues also questioned the use of genetic screening for other mild hereditary conditions.

"Applying the classic carrier screening paradigm to common, low-penetrance disease leads to inevitable dilemmas, and programs offering such screening should determine whether the true goal is knowledge and presymptomatic risk assessment or pregnancy termination of fetuses with a specified genetic status," the researchers wrote.

"Our results suggest that to avoid termination of pregnancies for generally mild conditions, even in a highly educated population, screening programs would require a combination of traditional, nondirective genetic counseling with medical counseling by professionals familiar with the specific diseases," they concluded.

More information

To learn more about Gaucher disease, visit the National Gaucher Foundation.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: JAMA/Archives journals, news release, Sept. 17, 2007


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