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Hum Reprod. 2011 May;26(5):972-7. doi: 10.1093/humrep/der042. Epub 2011 Feb 28.

Preconceptional genetic carrier testing and the commercial offer directly-to-consumers.

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  • 1Centre for Biomedical Ethics and Law, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.


Recently, a number of commercial companies are offering preconceptional carrier tests directly-to-consumers. This offer raises a number of concerns and issues above and beyond those encountered with preconceptional tests offered within the traditional health care setting. In order to bring some of these issues to light and to initiate dialogue on this topic, this article discusses the following issues: the current offer of preconceptional carrier tests (until the end of 2010) through online commercial companies; the implications for the informed consent procedure and the need for good information; the need for medical supervision and follow-up; and the appropriate use of existing resources. The article concludes with some reflections about the potential sustainability of the offer of preconceptional carrier tests directly-to-consumers.

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