Last updated on April 24, 2014 at 1:21 EDT

How To Find Out Your Genetic Risk Factors Like Angelina Jolie Did

May 17, 2013

Genetic Testing is Surprisingly Easy and Affordable According to Author of New Gene Patch Medicine Book

SAN FRANCISCO, May 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — When Angelina Jolie told the world about her double mastectomy, she expressed a wish for all women with a family history of breast cancer: “It is my hope that they, too, will be able to get gene tested, and that if they have a high risk they, too, will know that they have strong options.”

You may think that such a test is something only movie stars can afford, but almost everyone can afford one, according to Dr. Stephen Shrewsbury, author of Defy Your DNA: How the New Gene Patch Personalized Medicines Will Help You Overcome Your Greatest Health Challenges (10 Finger Press/2013)… www.defyyourdnabook.com

Shrewsbury says that 23andME will perform a gene test for $99. “They send you a simple spit test that will test for more than 200 traits, including breast cancer,” he says. The Mountain View, California company’s spit tests let you know your risk for a wide variety of diseases, from breast and prostate cancer to heart disease and Alzheimer’s. Companies like Genetics Testing Laboratory of Las Cruces, New Mexico have a breast cancer test for $285 that is administered by your physician.

“In some cases,” says Shrewsbury, “these tests can put your mind at ease. In others, especially in terms of Alzheimer’s, diabetes and heart disease, it will encourage you to be more diligent in making changes to lower your risks.”

Jolie’s mother died at 56 after a ten-year long battle with cancer. Jolie had her mastectomy done in part for her children’s peace of mind and as a preventive measure. Her children may never have to have surgery if they inherit the gene.

In his book, Shrewsbury says that there are already medicines being developed so that surgery like mastectomies will be replaced by pills or nasal sprays. “These personalized medicines will eventually override the genetic defects that cause breast cancer. When they’re finally approved, women won’t have to have invasive surgery in order to remain healthy.”

Dr. Stephen B. Shrewsbury is a physician whose 33-year career has taken him from the intimate world of family practice to Chief Medical Officer at a leading biotech firm on the cutting edge of global drug development and therapeutics. Since 2009, he has served on the Oligonucleotide Safety Working Group (OSWG), an international working group devoted to the safe development of gene patch medicines.

CONTACT: Sharon Cook
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SOURCE Dr. Stephen Shrewsbury

Source: PR Newswire