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Publication Abstract

Authors: Hensley Alford S, McBride CM, Reid RJ, Larson EB, Baxevanis AD, Brody LC

Title: Participation in genetic testing research varies by social group.

Journal: Public Health Genomics 14(2):85-93

Date: 2011

Abstract: BACKGROUND: Advances in technology have made individual access to personal genetic information foreseeable in the near future. Policy makers and the media forecast that the ready availability of personal genetic profiles would benefit both the individual and the health care system by improving outcomes and decreasing cost. However, there is a significant gap between having access to genetic data and either wanting or understanding the information it provides. OBJECTIVE: Our primary aim was to evaluate, using a population-based sample of healthy adults, whether gender, race and education status influences interest and participation in a multiplex genetic susceptibility test. METHODS: Healthy, insured individuals, 25-40 years of age, were approached via a large, integrated health system in which primary and specialty care is available. Study participants were offered personalized genetic risk information on 8 common chronic health conditions. Social groups historically known not to participate in genetic research (men, African Americans and those from lower education neighborhoods) were oversampled. We describe the recruitment outcomes and testing decisions of these social groups. RESULTS: We found that even among those with access to health care, African Americans were less likely to participate in the multiplex genetic susceptibility test, while those from higher education neighborhoods were more likely to participate. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that large social groups will likely be underrepresented in research in personalized genomics even when robust population-based recruitment strategies are employed.

Last Modified: 03 Sep 2013