Ethnicity can play a role in disease risk. Telling us about your ethnicity is important because certain variants are more common or have been studied more in certain ethnicities. This means that your ethnicity may impact how relevant a particular report is for you. In addition, some reports explain your results in the context of your ethnicity. You can learn more about how your ethnicity applies to each type of report below:
Our Health Predispositions reports (which include Genetic Health Risk reports) provide information about genetic variants that may influence your chances of developing certain health conditions. The variants in many of our Genetic Health Risk reports have been studied more in certain ethnicities than in others. The effect of these variants on the likelihood of developing a disease is expected to be similar in people of other ethnicities, but the exact numbers are not as well understood. In addition, our reports do not include all possible genetic variants associated with each health condition. For example, many of our Genetic Health Risk reports test for variants that are more common in people of certain ethnicities than in others. So if you are of an ethnicity not highlighted in the report and receive a "Variant(s) not detected" result, it's especially important to remember that you could have a variant common in people of your ethnicity but not included in our test.
Within the How To Use This Test section of each Genetic Health Risk report, the "Important Ethnicities" area lists the ethnicities in which the variants included in our test are most common or have been studied the most. If your ethnicity is highlighted for a particular report that report may provide more detailed information that is especially relevant for you.
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Our Powered by 23andMe Research reports within the Health Predisposition category are based on thousands of genetic markers (specific places in the genome where you can have different genetic variants). These reports are slightly different from your other 23andMe health reports as your result is based on a statistical model that combines the effects of all these genetic variants, rather than being based on only one or a few genetic variants, like many of our other reports. The statistical model used to generate your result for these reports also takes into account other factors, like your sex and ethnicity to provide a likelihood of developing the condition.
The typical likelihood of developing a condition may be higher for some ethnicities compared to others. At this time, our Powered by 23andMe Research reports are able to tailor a result to people of European, Hispanic/Latino, East/Southeast Asian, South Asian, Sub-Saharan African/African American, and (except for the Type 2 Diabetes report) Northern African/Central & Western Asian descent. If you have indicated in your account settings that you are of one of those ethnicities, that will be taken into account in providing your result in your report. The statistical model powering the result in this report performs better for some of these ethnicities than others, depending on how much data is available for each ethnicity.
Our Carrier Status reports provide information about variants that may not affect your health, but could affect your children's health. Some of the conditions we test for in our Carrier Status reports are more common in certain ethnicities. In addition, many of the variants we test for occur more frequently in some ethnicities than in others; this means that we can detect a larger proportion of carriers in certain ethnicities. Because of this, receiving a "Variant not detected" result may be more informative for certain ethnicities than for others For more information about why some Carrier Status reports are more relevant for certain ethnicities, see this help article.
In addition, some of our Carrier Status reports provide unique content that's tailored based on your self-reported ethnicity in your account settings. For example, if the condition has been well studied and is more common in people of your ethnicity, you may receive more detailed information, such as the average carrier frequency in people of your ethnicity or your post-test carrier risk (how likely it is that you're still a carrier if you receive a "Variant(s) not detected" result).
Within the How To Use This Test section of each Carrier Status report, the "Important Ethnicities" area lists ethnicities for which our test is most relevant. Within the About [Condition Name] section of the report, the “Ethnicities most affected” area lists the ethnicities that the condition is most common in. In addition, the Test Details section of the Scientific Details page lists all ethnicities for which we know the carrier detection rate of the test (how well the test is able to detect carriers of a particular ethnicity).
Our Pharmacogenetics reports provide information about genetic variants that may affect your body's ability to process certain medications. The variants included in these reports are found in many ethnicities, but some are more common in certain ethnicities. The biological effect of each variant is expected to be similar across people, regardless of ethnicity. Our Pharmacogenetics reports do not test for all possible variants that may affect medication processing, so if you receive a "No variants detected" result, keep in mind that you may still have a variant not included in our test. Moreover, no matter what your ethnicity, non-genetic factors such as age, weight, liver function, and drug-drug interactions also play an important role in how the body processes medications.
Wellness and Traits
Our Wellness reports provide information about how your DNA may affect your body's response to things like diet, exercise, the environment and sleep. Traits reports provide information about the genetics behind your physical features and other qualities such as fear of heights or public speaking. Many of these reports provide information on specific genetic variants that have been studied more in certain ethnicities than in others. The effect of these variants are expected to be similar in people of other ethnicities, but the exact impact is not as well understood and there may be differences between people of different ethnicities. Other reports are based on statistical models derived from 23andMe research that combine the effects of many genetic variants. The scientific details of each report indicate which ethnicities the variants have been best studied or which ethnicities the models are most relevant for. When available, these reports provide results based on your genetic information paired with the ethnicity you report to us. It's important to remember other factors, like lifestyle and environment, may differentially influence report results of people from different ethnicities. These other environmental and lifestyle factors are not fully captured in the reports.
*The 23andMe PGS test includes health predisposition and carrier status reports. Health predisposition reports include both reports that meet FDA requirements for genetic health risks and the 23andMe Type 2 Diabetes health predisposition report which is based on 23andMe research and has not been reviewed by the FDA. The test uses qualitative genotyping to detect select clinically relevant variants in the genomic DNA of adults from saliva for the purpose of reporting and interpreting genetic health risks and reporting carrier status. It is not intended to diagnose any disease. Your ethnicity may affect the relevance of each report and how your genetic health risk results are interpreted. Each genetic health risk report describes if a person has variants associated with a higher risk of developing a disease, but does not describe a person’s overall risk of developing the disease. The test is not intended to tell you anything about your current state of health, or to be used to make medical decisions, including whether or not you should take a medication, how much of a medication you should take, or determine any treatment. Our carrier status reports can be used to determine carrier status, but cannot determine if you have two copies of any genetic variant. These carrier reports are not intended to tell you anything about your risk for developing a disease in the future, the health of your fetus, or your newborn child's risk of developing a particular disease later in life. For certain conditions, we provide a single report that includes information on both carrier status and genetic health risk. Warnings & Limitations: The 23andMe PGS Genetic Health Risk Report for BRCA1/BRCA2 (Selected Variants) is indicated for reporting of the 185delAG and 5382insC variants in the BRCA1 gene and the 6174delT variant in the BRCA2 gene. The report describes if a woman is at increased risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, and if a man is at increased risk of developing breast cancer or may be at increased risk of developing prostate cancer. The three variants included in this report are most common in people of Ashkenazi Jewish descent and do not represent the majority of BRCA1/BRCA2 variants in the general population. The MUTYH-Associated Polyposis Genetic Health Risk Report is indicated for reporting the Y179C and G396D variants in the MUTYH gene and an increased risk for colorectal cancer. The two variants included in this report are most common in people of Northern European descent. These reports do not include variants in other genes linked to hereditary cancers and the absence of variants included in these reports do not rule out the presence of other genetic variants that may impact cancer risk. The PGS test is not a substitute for visits to a healthcare professional for recommended screenings or appropriate follow-up. Results should be confirmed in a clinical setting before taking any medical action. For important information and limitations regarding other genetic health risk reports and carrier status reports, visit https://www.23andme.com/test-info.
**23andMe PGS Pharmacogenetics reports: The 23andMe test uses qualitative genotyping to detect 6 variants in 3 genes in the genomic DNA of adults from saliva for the purpose of reporting and interpreting information about the processing of certain therapeutics to inform discussions with a healthcare professional. It does not describe if a person will or will not respond to a particular therapeutic and does not describe the association between detected variants and any specific therapeutic. Results should be confirmed by an independent genetic test prescribed by your own healthcare provider before taking any medical action. Warning: Test information should not be used to start, stop, or change any course of treatment and does not test for all possible variants that may affect metabolism or protein function. The PGS test is not a substitute for visits to a healthcare professional. Making changes to your current regimen can lead to harmful side effects or reduced intended benefits of your medication, therefore consult with your healthcare professional before taking any medical action. For a complete list of the 6 variants tested, visit 23andme.com/test-info/pharmacogenetics/.