Walgreens decides not putting DNA testing kit on shelves - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/13/10

Walgreens decides not putting DNA testing kit on shelves Friday

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By Karin McCay| email

Edited by Kristin Beerman | email 

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) – Genetic screening tests were supposed go on sale Friday at Walgreens across the country and now they are not.  Apparently, news that Walgreens planned to make that testing kit available to the public this week prompted a letter from the FDA to the kit maker, Pathway Genomics.  The FDA reminded the company that it has not approved the product yet and that has prompted Walgreens to pull the product even before it hits store shelves.

"We've elected not to move forward with offering the product until we have further clarity on this matter," said Molly Daniels, M.D., with M.D. Anderson CC.

The decision not to sell the kit has been applauded by many physicians and genetic counselors who say although genetic testing can be very useful in a professional setting, the test kits offer incomplete information about alarming conditions and they're concerned some people will end up scared for no reason or falsely reassured. 

"Simply knowing that you have a change on one gene is not going to indicate your predisposition to acquiring the disease in the future," said Kathy Kinlaw, a Bio-Ethicist at Emory University.

Now, some believe the Walgreens incident will convince the FDA to take a hard look at companies making similar tests available over the internet.

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