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Genetic Testing

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NEWS
By JUDY FORMAN | August 11, 2006
For years now, worried Americans have been able to glimpse their potential health future through genetic testing. And until recently, the nearly 1,000 genetic tests on the market have been available mainly through the mainstream medical establishment. That means through clinics, hospitals and doctors' offices - and the tests have been cautiously interpreted for lay folks by trained genetic counselors. But that is changing rapidly with the advent of direct-to-consumer, or DTC, genetic testing, a booming and controversial subset of the $6 billion genetic testing and molecular diagnostics business.
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HEALTH
By Meredith Cohn, The Baltimore Sun | August 16, 2014
William Smith's disease has grim milestones. At 2, the Gambrills triplet known as Mick couldn't walk or talk as well as his siblings. In kindergarten, he started losing language and motor skills. At 12, he needed a wheelchair and a feeding tube. Doctors at Johns Hopkins Hospital dedicated to treating his symptoms said he had an undiagnosed progressive neuromuscular disease. But a new test may provide something the family has long sought: a name. "The idea that there is something out there that can tell you [what's wrong]
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BUSINESS
By Liz Bowie and Liz Bowie,Staff Writer | June 20, 1993
By the end of this decade, gene doctors promise to offer a kind of voyage into the future.Their "time machine" will be blood tests that will screen you for dozens of genes and provide a statistical peek at your health. Want to know the probability of getting certain diseases, from Alzheimer's to colon cancer to alcoholism? They will tell you.Scientists have touted such genetic information as a powerful tool. Armed with such knowledge, you could change your eating habits to reduce the risk of getting cancer or heart disease.
HEALTH
By Jean Marbella, The Baltimore Sun | June 13, 2013
Researchers hailed the Supreme Court ruling Wednesday that bans the patenting of human DNA, saying it would expand access to genetic testing for disease at lower cost to patients. In a unanimous decision, the justices said Myriad Genetics did not have exclusive rights to the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 genes that are linked to significantly greater risk for breast cancer and thus should not be the only company allowed to test for it. "Myriad did not create anything," Justice Clarence Thomas wrote for his fellow justices.
NEWS
By Jonathan D. Rockoff and Jonathan D. Rockoff,Sun reporter | April 25, 2008
WASHINGTON -- Coming to grips with the growing role of genetic testing in American life, Congress acted yesterday to outlaw the use of genetic information in employment or insurance decisions. The Senate approved a measure, which the House of Representatives is expected to ratify and President Bush to sign, that would become the first federal law dealing with the growing role of genetics in the prediction, diagnosis and individualized treatment of disease. Many patients who could benefit have refused genetic testing out of fear of discrimination, experts say, and potentially groundbreaking research into the molecular causes of disease has been stymied because possible study subjects, fearing repercussions, refuse to participate.
FEATURES
By Lynn Bulmahn and Lynn Bulmahn,Cox News Service | November 23, 1993
Imagine giving birth to a beautiful baby, only to see it decline and die from a fatal disease.That's the plight of parents whose children are born with an inherited condition known as Tay-Sachs disease.But thanks to genetic testing, parents can know if they're at risk for passing on Tay-Sachs to offspring -- and do something about it prior to a pregnancy.Because of voluntary genetic testing before a couple decided to have a child -- or before marriage -- couples at high risk for having a child with the fatal disease found out prior to a pregnancy.
NEWS
By Kathy Boccella and Kathy Boccella,Knight-Ridder News Service | December 12, 1991
When Efser Garrison became pregnant at age 39, she did what most older mothers do -- she had a test to learn if she was carrying a baby with Down's syndrome.But there were problems with the first amniocentesis, and by the time a second one revealed the disorder, it was too late for an abortion. A daughter, Hope, was born mentally retarded.Her parents claim she was a "wrongful birth."With the brave new world of genetic testing has come a brash new brand of lawsuit. In wrongful birth cases, parents claim a fetus' genetic problems should have been discovered.
NEWS
By JONATHAN D. ROCKOFF and JONATHAN D. ROCKOFF,SUN REPORTER | November 30, 2005
WASHINGTON -- As understanding of the human genome advances, genetic testing has become an increasingly popular - and lucrative - tool for diagnosing diseases. There are now more than 800 tests available, promising to assess everything from the risk of Down syndrome to susceptibility to breast cancer. Yesterday, a Johns Hopkins University think tank called on the federal government to strengthen its industry oversight to ensure the quality of testing. The request by the Genetics and Public Policy Center stems from concerns that expectant parents wanting to learn whether their baby would be susceptible to cystic fibrosis or a healthy adult looking for an early diagnosis of Huntington's disease might make life-changing decisions or receive the wrong treatment based on shoddy test results.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | January 5, 2000
A Syracuse, N. Y., man questioned 26 years ago about the 1973 killing near Odenton of a teen-age girl was ordered yesterday to submit to genetic testing, as Anne Arundel County authorities try to link his DNA with genetic material from the crime. Anne Arundel investigators, acting on a tip, have spent nearly two years re-examining the beating death on Nov. 17, 1973, of Donna Lee Dustin, 17, renewing her parents' hopes of finding out what happened to her. The nude body of the Bowie girl, who had been sexually assaulted, was found by hunters in an abandoned quarry.
HEALTH
By Jean Marbella, The Baltimore Sun | June 13, 2013
Researchers hailed the Supreme Court ruling Wednesday that bans the patenting of human DNA, saying it would expand access to genetic testing for disease at lower cost to patients. In a unanimous decision, the justices said Myriad Genetics did not have exclusive rights to the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 genes that are linked to significantly greater risk for breast cancer and thus should not be the only company allowed to test for it. "Myriad did not create anything," Justice Clarence Thomas wrote for his fellow justices.
SPORTS
By Sandra McKee, The Baltimore Sun | December 10, 2011
Ashley Fishell-Shaffer Sparrows Point For the Pointers to win their first Baltimore County divisional championship, they had to be nearly perfect within Division 2. At 9-0 they were, thanks to what they learned from their coach: mental toughness, a positive attitude, and the knowledge that if they didn't win, "it was just a game and the sun would come up tomorrow. " It was a lesson that life had taught Fishell-Shaffer, 29, who lost a baby at the start of the 2010 season because of a genetic defect and had a miscarriage last April.
NEWS
By Lara J. Nettelfield and Sarah Wagner | June 6, 2011
Despite his efforts to stave off his long-overdue date with justice, indicted war criminal Ratko Mladic appeared before a panel of judges at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague on Friday. Soon he will stand trial for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, atrocities he planned and executed throughout the 1992-1995 war, from the siege of Sarajevo to the concentration camps of Prijedor and the genocide at Srebrenica. Mr. Mladic's last request before his transfer was to visit the grave of his daughter, Ana, who committed suicide in 1994 with her father's pistol.
NEWS
By Jill Rosen, The Baltimore Sun | May 14, 2010
Someone of the canine persuasion has been leaving his business all over the ritzy Scarlett Place condominium near the Inner Harbor. And the condo board says the only way to find the culprit: mandated DNA tests for every dog in the building. "We pay all this money, and we're walking around stepping in dog poop. We bring guests over and this is what they're greeted by. It's embarrassing for me as a dog owner and as someone who lives in this building," says Steve Frans, the board member who raised the idea of hiring a lab to identify which of the dozens of dogs in the luxury building is behind the droppings.
NEWS
By Jonathan D. Rockoff and Jonathan D. Rockoff,Sun reporter | April 25, 2008
WASHINGTON -- Coming to grips with the growing role of genetic testing in American life, Congress acted yesterday to outlaw the use of genetic information in employment or insurance decisions. The Senate approved a measure, which the House of Representatives is expected to ratify and President Bush to sign, that would become the first federal law dealing with the growing role of genetics in the prediction, diagnosis and individualized treatment of disease. Many patients who could benefit have refused genetic testing out of fear of discrimination, experts say, and potentially groundbreaking research into the molecular causes of disease has been stymied because possible study subjects, fearing repercussions, refuse to participate.
NEWS
By Chris Emery and Chris Emery,Sun reporter | April 6, 2008
When the paper trail that Raymond A. Winbush followed in search of his African roots ended at a slave-holding Kentucky plantation, he turned to a combination of modern technologies: genetic testing and online social networking. It worked. A DNA test traced his ancestry to tribes in Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea, while an online forum set up by the company that scanned his DNA put him in touch with other African-Americans who share similar genetic markers. "It's like a electronic family reunion," said Winbush, director of the Institute for Urban Affairs at Morgan State University.
NEWS
By Larry E. Williams | March 29, 2008
Spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to map your genome may be the latest fad to glean the future. But for all the billions spent on research, genetic testing isn't a cure-all for what might ail you, and it could lead to significant trouble for individuals and society if misused. Researchers and businesses are eager to profit by selling genetic tests to assess everything from paternity or sexual computability to an individual's susceptibility to disease. For some, such tests can be a blessing.
NEWS
By Douglas Birch and Douglas Birch,Sun Staff Writer | May 9, 1995
Researchers summoned a Baltimore County woman to an office at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health last spring to tell her the bad news. They had found a genetic threat lurking in her 7-year-old son's DNA -- a mutant gene that almost always triggers a rare form of colon cancer.It was the same illness that led surgeons to remove her colon in 1979.While the boy, Michael, now 8, is still perfectly healthy, without surgery he is almost certain to develop cancer by age 40."I didn't think he was going to have it, I really didn't," Susan B., 43, recalled last week, her green eyes welling with tears.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | May 6, 2001
Improved genetic testing was credited for the indictment last week of an imprisoned rapist on charges in another attack, which occurred more than a decade ago. An Anne Arundel County grand jury indicted 44-year-old William Robert Dempsey on Friday in connection with a Sept. 10, 1989, sexual assault of a woman in an abandoned building in Laurel. Dempsey, formerly of Odenton, is serving a 25-year sentence for another 1989 rape. More-sensitive genetic testing enabled county police - whose lab routinely retests DNA from unsolved crimes - to build a case they could not make at the time of the incident, said State's Attorney Frank R. Weathersbee.
FEATURES
By Dennis O'Brien and Dennis O'Brien,sun reporter | June 28, 2007
A drop of blood taken from Korinna Sieracki's heel a day after she was born last June at Franklin Square Hospital Center revealed what her mother feared. "When I heard cystic fibrosis, I just lost it because all I thought was, `My God, my daughter's going to die when she's just a child,'" said Kristie Sieracki, a mother of three from Edgewood. But now the Sierackis consider themselves lucky for two reasons.
NEWS
By Chris Emery and Chris Emery,Sun reporter | November 5, 2006
When Tracie Hoyt found a lump in her breast last summer, doctors confirmed that it was cancer. After surgery to remove the lump, she expected radiation treatments and months of chemotherapy. A self-described workaholic, Hoyt worried that she would be too ill to deliver mail along her Cockeysville postal route. "You hear how terrible chemo can be on your body and that people are really sick," she said. To her surprise, Hoyt, 46, was spared chemotherapy. A genetic test known as Oncotype DX provided a look at the inner workings of the tumor, helping her doctor predict that chances were low that her particular type of cancer would return.
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