Source:Hull SC, Prasad K. Reading between the lines: direct-to-consumer advertising of genetic testing.
Hastings Cent Rep.
2001
;
31
(3):
33
–35.

As genetic tests become integrated into clinical practice, we can expect more direct-to-consumer advertising for genetic testing. This case study and commentary begins with the authors’ attendance at a play about a woman who is dying from ovarian cancer. While thumbing through the playbill, the authors noted a full-page advertisement taken out by a biotechnology company for its commercial BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic test. The authors found the advertisement to be manipulative, misleading, and misguiding. The advertisement seemed to imply that large numbers of women are at risk of developing genetic breast cancer and might benefit from testing. While the advertisement suggested that testing can dispel the fear of contracting breast cancer, it failed to mention that only a small percentage of women who will eventually suffer...

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