Are you vulnerable to cancer? Do you run a higher risk of Alzheimer’s after you turn 60? Is there a high chance of you getting Parkinson’s disease? Well, there’s a new breakthrough in the field of science that takes the guesswork out of the equation and acquaints you with the actual chances of these possible health issues. Although the completion of the human genome project in 2003 led to an explosion in the science of genetics, it also provided extensive DNA data which continues to benefit a large number of people, through the commonly available genetic testing facilities.
In fact, people can nowadays use the best DNA testing kits and get a glimpse into the DNA they inherited from their families, and find out whether it’s good, bad or downright dangerous! Let’s now take you through some of the other commonly known benefits of DNA testing.
Possibility of a genetic disease or condition DNA testing can tell you whether your DNA has a sequence that suggests some genetic disease or health condition. Using this knowledge, you along with your doctor can take various steps to avoid that particular condition or disease. Such tests can also work as a confirmation of some specific diagnosis, and help you better manage a disease. For instance, this test can help you find out if you have SNC (PARK1) gene mutation which can lead to Parkinson’s disease. These tests also help you find out markers of inherited cancer types such as BRCA2 and BRCA1, closely linked to breast cancer. A mutation in these genes indicates a higher risk of getting breast cancer.
Helps tackle enzyme deficiencies
A genetic or DNA test can help you identify mutations that can result in enzyme deficiencies. For instance, MTHFR is a type of enzyme deficiency wherein the involved enzyme is the cause of various biochemical reactions, including the B12 assimilation and regulation of the detoxification pathways, in the body. Any deficiency of this enzyme can be very dangerous for health, leading to all kinds of health issues ranging from Lupus to Epstein-Barr to anaemia to cancer. You can find more than 50 different genetic variants of the MTHFR mutation. The most commonly screened genes in this regard are R594Q, A1298C, C677T and P39P.
Facilitates preventive health steps
A DNA test can heavily tip the health-scale in your favour, enabling you to create a lifestyle which can help you steer clear of activating any problematic genes. Essentially you won’t let any problematic genes become your destiny. You’d no longer be able to use your genes as an excuse for things that seem out of control! Please note, at any given time 10% to 15% of a person’s genes are in a ‘turned on’ state, thus dictating to a great extent whatever happens in his/her body. How you lead your life and whatever you do on a daily basis determines which all of these genes would get expressed. The science of such gene expression is referred to as epigenetics, which is also about the practice of specific gene management, using sleep, exercise, environmental exposure, stress, health supplements and food.