Whats the harm in giving out my DNA results?
February 21, 2013 6:45 AM Subscribe
I recently had my DNA analyzed by 23andme, and now a friend wants to write about my results as part of a story in a popular national magazine. Normally I'd be fine with this, but I have some concerns about future insurance effects, especially considering one of the results. What, if any, is the real danger in having my name being used with my real results?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (24 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
For reference, I'm a 30 year old male. Very physically active, with a healthy diet and lifestyle.
All but one of my results came back as expected. No really rare diseases. Prostate and colorectal cancer were a little elevated, but that runs in the family and I was anticipating that. What I was not expecting, however, was my Alzheimer's results. My risk is 6.5x the average rate. It's alarmingly high and roughly at 50%. I'm not totally sure what this means though, just that it is obviously higher chance than the average. I've talked with family members to get family history (no history of it), and looking into other lifestyle changes, but that's not what my question is about really.
My question is that I have a friend who is writing an article about DNA sequencing and wanted to potentially use me and my results. The article would be in a very popular national magazine. And I'm a concerned about insurance implications. I know that the commercial DNA/Genome sequencing is a rapidly growing but new field. So while my results now might not mean much, things are changing at such a pace that 10 years down the line my name and publication of my results could come back to haunt me. I know there are provisions in the ACA that don't allow discrimination by insurance companies anymore, but politics of these situations can change.
There is the possibility that we request to be used as anonymous, but the magazine could reject that idea, and besides anonymity might be detrimental to the articles effectiveness.
How legit are my concerns about insurance? Are there other possible concerns I should think about?