Genetic Testing

I am getting lots of questions about genetic testing. Navigenics was acquired late last year by Life Technologies. Life Technologies is going to relaunch the Navigenics DNA disease testing as well as a new product to look at the genetic changes in patients with cancer (to personalize their cancer treatments). The final testing and regulatory filings are underway. I apologize that the testing hasn’t been available, but will be soon!

To you health!

David

Comments

  1. ADEDOTUN ADESHINA says:

    It’s really nice to here about your book ‘THE END OF ILLNESS’ how can i get your book.

  2. D. Mendlik says:

    My brother lives in Czech Republic nad his cancer returned for 4th time, he has a very good doctors team a super care, the 3rd time he was included itno Czeh/USA reaserch… this time doctor is looking for alternatives, his bones are very weak so are the blood cells.. I just listen your short video about the chick egg and it took my interest very much!! I am going to translate and e-mail to my brother!!! Its amazingly simple what you came up with! But sometimes…we forget to be simple. Thank you very mch, maybe there will be able to help again!

  3. Hans Mustermann says:

    Dear Mr. Agus,

    will these test also be available in Europe (Germany) or are they US exclusively?

    Kind Regards

  4. Dear Dr. Agus, I read your op-ed piece in the NY Times about genetic testing for BRAC1 and 2. I have neither of these genetic abnormalities but in talking with a geneticist my brother and I have a high likelihood of Lynch Syndrome for the same colon cancer that killed our mother, her sister and their father. The cost of the testing is not covered by any insurance carrier in Massachusetts. They all want cash. Thousands of dollars. I could not get the genetic testing done unless there was a one degree of separation from someone who already had the test done. My brother cannot afford the cost either. We have to live with the assumption that we both carry Lynch Syndrome and get our colonoscopy’s done every other year. The price for these tests to look at our genes is so completely outrageous it staggers me. All I got out of meeting with the Geneticist was sorry I can’t help you unless you pony up.
    Sincerely,
    xx xx
    Massachusetts

    • I am so sorry that you are having such difficulty getting these critical tests done. The good news is that with the US Supreme COurt decision the price will continue to fall for the tests.

  5. I was very pleased by your NY Times op-ed piece on Myriad Genetics’ unconscionable practices. I live in Costa Rica and am unable to pay the cash fee that Myriad asks for genetic testing for BRCA1 and 2. I have been searching for a non-US provider, and you mention that there are European companies that do it. However I have been unable to find any of them. How can I locate a reliable tester for BRCA1 and 2 outside the U.S.?

    If you post this, which is fine with me, please do not publish my name.

    Thanks,
    A.

    • Yes. quite exciting that the US Supreme Court has democratized DNA information, and the cost of tests will continue to fall. There are several companies that have entered the market, including internationally and there will be several more in the next few months.

  6. The market is getting crowded for multigene actionable mutation detection tests. Can you as a non partisan compare ampliseq, foundation 1, sequenom, preciopios, navigenics and such systems in terms of their analytic sensitivity, specificity and accuracy along with pricing and likelihood of benefit in an advanced cancer irrespective of histogenesis and primary site.

    • Yes, there are several tests out there. Focus on a test that has been reviewed by the FDA and uses genetic counsellors for review of the data. I cannot recommend an individual company.

  7. Ray Burns says:

    What is your stance on fish oil?

  8. Brian Turner says:

    I have chronic back pain and take 1000 mg/day of ibuprofen. Since ibuprofen is a non steroidal anti inflammatory drug, what are your thoughts on adding a low dose aspirin? I am 60 years old and am in otherwise good health. At my annual physical my Primary Physician advised it to be unnecessary .

    • I would ask your doctor about combining the aspirin and ibuprofen, as I don’t know enough about you. Also, ask him why you shouldn’t be on an aspirin. Go armed with data!

  9. Roberto C. says:

    Now that Navigenics is out of Business and Life Technologies in not yet offering a similar Service, Do you recommend any other company for DNA disease testing?

    • I would use 23 and me when it relaunches. Navigenics will also relaunch.

      • I’ve read articles where reports had their testing done by multiple testing resources and received interpretations of results that not only varied, but contradicted each other. One of the firms used was 23 and me. My understanding is that interpretation is not always simple, that it isn’t necessarily as simple as finding out that you have this gene or that one. It seems that the combinations of genes matters and all pertinent genes may not be identified with the current tests. How is it possible to know what is or is not a reasonable interpretation? Is there a good online (or other) resource where a lay person can go to become better informed?

        Thanks,

        Jay

        • Great question, Jay. The US FDA got involved in the personal genomics space and id regulating the area. If you go with a company they have approved (none yet on the market), you can best be assured an accurate outcome.

  10. Denise Davis says:

    Good morning. Is there a doctor in Henderson,NV or Las Vegas that treats in the manner you do? My husband and I would like to have testing done.

  11. Richard Durango says:

    Dr. Agus:

    Am fairly frustrated by the FDA’s arbitrary banning of health-related genetic testing for consumers.

    23andMe presently only provides heritage information (interesting – but not as informative).

    What is the prospect of this information becoming available to consumers, again one day?

    • The 23andme test will be back on the market, after they address the issues the FDA questioned. But you are correct, we need a transparent system for regulation of genetic tests.

  12. Brian Turner says:

    I’ve taken 10mg of Lipitor/day for 2 years. I just had my annual physical with comprehensive blood work with no problems. However, my whole body ( hands, shoulders, legs,…etc.) are achy and feel weak. My Cholesterol is under control but the aches are keeping me from being as active as I would like. Are there any other Statin classifications that meet your criteria or ( I know you don’t believe in supplements) are there any supplements that could help?

  13. Dr Agus, in one of your 14 videos you spoke about a genetic testing company you are involved in. I want to be analyzed by a company that I can trust and I do trust your work.
    I have high cholesterol, can’t make myself take statins. Not qualifying for Obamacare (even tho unemployed) I can’t afford or have a desire to take Lipitor etc. The damage these drugs do concerns me if they are worth it. Family history of heart disease, mom AFIB with two leaky valves at age 87 still kicking. No family history of cancer, except father who smoked and developed lung cancer 25 yrs after quitting. So concerning cancer I feel pretty confident. Heart disease not so much.

    Please provide information to have testing taken.

    I enjoy your spots on CBS morning show. Please keep up the great work in educating the public.

    Gail

    • Gail
      Thanks so much for your email. I understand your concerns. I would discuss with your doctor again concerning statins, as their cost is very low. The cost for the generic version of lipitor is $4 a month, without health insurance. Genetic testing is still being evaluated by the FDA, so not currently available. I do wish things happened quicker.

      Best

      d

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