Direct-to-consumer genetic testing: perceptions, problems, and policy responses

Annu Rev Med. 2012:63:23-33. doi: 10.1146/annurev-med-062110-123753. Epub 2011 Sep 1.


Direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing has attracted a great amount of attention from policy makers, the scientific community, professional groups, and the media. Although it is unclear what the public demand is for these services, there does appear to be public interest in personal genetic risk information. As a result, many commentators have raised a variety of social, ethical, and regulatory issues associated with this emerging industry, including privacy issues, ensuring that DTC companies provide accurate information about the risks and limitations of their services, the possible adverse impact of DTC genetic testing on healthcare systems, and concern about how individuals may interpret and react to genetic risk information.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Genetic Diseases, Inborn* / diagnosis
  • Genetic Diseases, Inborn* / epidemiology
  • Genetic Diseases, Inborn* / genetics
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease / epidemiology
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease / genetics
  • Genetic Privacy / trends*
  • Genetic Testing / economics
  • Genetic Testing / trends*
  • Health Policy / trends*
  • Humans
  • Marketing of Health Services / economics
  • Marketing of Health Services / trends*
  • Risk Factors