Razib Khan One-stop-shopping for all of my content

April 15, 2011

Checking for Alzheimer’s risk with 23andMe

Filed under: 23andMe,Alzheimer's Disease,Health,Human Health — Razib Khan @ 10:21 am

Dr. Daniel MacArthur at Genomes Unzipped:

23andMe announced yesterday that it will now be releasing information on Alzheimer’s disease risk markers in the APOE gene to customers who purchased their recently upgraded v3 test. The APOE markers are famously associated with a major increase in risk for late-onset Alzheimer’s, with individuals carrying two copies of the ε4 version of the gene being around 15 times more likely than average to develop the disease. Customers who have been tested on the v3 platform will be able to able to access their APOE status after “unlocking” it; customers on earlier versions of the test will need to upgrade to get access. You can see screenshots of the unlocking and results pages here.

I don’t put much weight on 23andMe’s disease risk estimates since I have a relatively large pedigree, and my four grandparents all made it at least to age 75 (one made it to 100, and two to 80+), so I have some sense of my odds of late onset diseases. But, I will admit I was still a little anxious when “unlocking” my results for this locus. This is a classic “tail risk” event which hooks into all the ...

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