24Genetics and transparency

Transparency had been one of the 24Genetics’ main commitments since its birth three years ago. Our goal is for customers always to know what service they are contracting and what kind of information they can expect from it. Our genetic health test already covers more than 200 pathologies and biomarkers. On the website, we have a detailed description of the test’s information: how it’s done, what technology we use, and, above all, what type of information our clients will receive and what the limitations of our test are.

To ensure that our clients are clear about what they are getting, we make both a prior and subsequent call for advice to help in the interpretation of the results.

An example of our commitment to transparency is the information we provide about complex mutations. In this case, we indicate the percentage of coverage of the variations we analyze because, unlike clinical tests, we do not examine the entire genetic code related to each pathology. It is important to note that the mutations we include were chosen by a multidisciplinary team of experts in oncological and genetic medicine following strict quality standards. Therefore, the modifications described in the report are only pathogenic.

The 24Genetics test analyses more than 700,000 markers and uses advanced bioinformatics algorithms, which allows not only to analyze possible mutations in the DNA but also to measure the polygenic risk of a wide range of diseases (complex diseases). All this provides relevant information about the propensity to contract certain diseases and allows the client to make decisions about adopting healthy lifestyle habits or the convenience of more extensive testing. Besides, if a client has suspicion or special concern about a particular gene or syndrome – due to family history – we recommend that they consult their doctor or geneticist to assess the need for a test that analyses all the genes involved in a particular disease.

For 24Genetics, it is essential that clients understand the scope and meaning of these tests, and that they are aware that not everything is genetic. In essence, environmental and lifestyle factors play a vital role in the development or prevention of disease.

Written by Manuel de la Mata

Geneticist

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