Can a Genetic Test Predict Suicide Risk?
the MPR take:
The startup company Sundance Diagnostics has announced that it will begin offering a suicide risk test to physicians next month for patients taking antidepressant medications. The test is based on previous research which identified 79 genetic markers that together could correctly predict suicidal ideation with high probability (91%). Researchers at Johns Hopkins are also currently working on a suicide risk test; this one is based on a single gene which is able to predict suicide attempt with 80% accuracy. But some experts are skeptical about the use of these genetic tests since not enough DNA from people who committed suicide is available for researchers to study. The CDC lists family history as the most important factor in predicting whether a patient is at risk of suicide; this connection is what motivates researchers to continue investigating the link between genetics and suicide.
About 35,000 people kill themselves in the U.S. When someone commits suicide, the reaction is often the same. Based on such gene research, one startup company, Sundance Diagnostics, based in Boulder, Colorado, says it will begin offering a suicide risk test to doctors next month, but only in connection with patients taking antidepressant drugs like Prozac and Zoloft.
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