Public Release: 

Direct-to-consumer genetic testing -- 2-day symposium

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

Companies are increasingly offering genetic tests directly to consumers to assess their risk for illnesses such as breast cancer or diabetes. These tests have raised concerns over whether people will receive adequate counseling -- given that the tests are not administered by health care providers -- and whether consumers' genetic information will be kept private, among other issues.

On Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 the National Research Council and Institute of Medicine will hold a symposium to explore the health, policy, and ethical implications of direct-to-consumer genetic testing.

SYMPOSIUM DETAILS: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Aug. 31 and from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Sept. 1 in Room 100 of the National Academies' Keck Center, 500 Fifth St., N.W., Washington, D.C. A preliminary agenda is available at http://sites.nationalacademies.org/PGA/stl/PGA_050739.

AUDIO WEBCAST: Morning sessions on Aug. 31 -- covering the history and likely evolution of direct-to-consumer genetic testing, as well as the regulatory framework -- will be available via live audio webcast at http://national-academies.org.

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REPORTERS: Register to attend by contacting the Office of News and Public Information, tel. 202-334-2138 or e-mail news@nas.edu.

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