This past March, 23andMe, a personal genomics and biotechnology company announced their latest reporting technology, a test that determines a person’s predisposition to Type 2 diabetes.
The test itself is to help people identify what level of risk they may have in developing Type 2. However, it is not meant to imply that the report actually diagnoses a person with Type 2.
The company has recently partnered with Lark Health, a platform that uses artificial intelligence to help people manage chronic disease. The idea is that 23andMe will help identify the risk of chronic disease through the examination of genetic data. Once you are aware of the risk level, you would then use Lark Health to change lifestyle habits.
The release of this test is significant, as it is the first test that utilizes the data collected to examine risk for disease. “For a company like 23andMe, increasing the number of tests they offer adds a lot of value, and can have a snowball effect: the more data they collect, the more tests they can develop and the more tests they offer the more data they can collect (since new tests will drive new users to the service).”
The rates of Type 2 diabetes continues to increase, affecting 1 in 10 Americans and costing more than $327 billion dollars a year. By informing consumers of their risk of Type 2, 23andMe hopes to help increase prevention efforts.
The announcement of the new risk test was met with some push-back, stating that screening tests are already in place, the difficult part is encouraging someone to actually change their habits and lifestyle to better their health.
23andMe hopes that their evidence-based approach with the widespread qualitative diagnosis of pre-diabetes will help people take the diagnoses more seriously.
With diabetes expected to affect half the population, 23andMe is hoping “When customers learn about their genetic likelihood of developing Type 2 diabetes, we believe there is an opportunity to motivate them to change their lifestyle and ultimately to help them prevent the disease.”
To Learn More: 23andMe launches predisposition test for Type 2 diabetes – mobihealthnews
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