Direct-to-Consumer Nutrigenetics Testing: An Overview

Nutrients. 2020 Feb 21;12(2):566. doi: 10.3390/nu12020566.


At present, specialized companies offering genetic testing services without the involvement of clinicians are growing; this development is a direct consequence of the significant decrease in genotyping and sequencing costs. Online companies offer predictions about the risk of developing complex diseases during one's life course, and they offer suggestions for personal lifestyle. Several companies have been created that provide nutrigenetics services; these companies suggest dietary indications-a central issue in the prevention and etiopathogenesis of specific diseases-based on one's personal genetic background. Dietary patterns are defined on the basis of a limited set of genetic markers. In this article, we analyze the online nutrigenetics services offered by 45 companies worldwide, to obtain an overall picture of the costs, the types of nutritional traits considered and the level of scientific precision of the services proposed. Our analysis clearly highlights the need for specific guidelines, in order to ensure a set of minimum quality standards for the nutrigenetics services offered to the customer.

Keywords: diet; direct-to-consumer genetic testing (DTC-GT); genetic; nutrigenetics; nutrigenomics; nutrition.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Direct-To-Consumer Screening and Testing / economics
  • Direct-To-Consumer Screening and Testing / standards
  • Direct-To-Consumer Screening and Testing / statistics & numerical data*
  • Genetic Testing / economics
  • Genetic Testing / standards
  • Genetic Testing / statistics & numerical data*
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Humans
  • Nutrigenomics / economics
  • Nutrigenomics / standards
  • Nutrigenomics / statistics & numerical data*