Coming soon to a drugstore near you, alongside the aspirin and greeting cards, will be the promise of answers to some of life's most personal mysteries: Am I at risk for Alzheimer's disease? Or breast cancer? Or obesity?
Starting Friday, Walgreens will begin selling Insight personal genetic testing kits, becoming the first major retail chain in the U.S. to offer home tests that say they assess the risk of developing one of dozens of different health conditions. CVS plans to have it in stores by August. The product's introduction raises immediate concerns among scientists, bio-ethicists and genetic counselors. They worry that consumers will misuse or misunderstand the results of a test so open to interpretation it is potentially meaningless, or frightening, especially without a full medical assessment.
Bonnie - I am vehemently opposed to these tests as of now. There are so many variables involved that are not included in these test kits. The foremost geneticists, who figured they would have had all the answers by now, admit that their knowledge is in its infancy.
UPDATE - Walgreens has decided to hold off on selling the kits until further notice.