Are genetic tests worthwhile in predicting diabetes or its complications?

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Takeaway

  • At this time, genetic tests are not useful as predictors of onset of diabetes or its complications.
  • Patients should be warned about the poor sensitivity of currently marketed diabetes risk tests and instead encouraged to enroll in clinical trials to better inform the field.

Why this matters

  • Genetic risk tests are being marketed to clinicians and patients.

Study design

  • Review of evidence for the ability of genetic tests to discriminate between people who will or who will not develop diabetes or its complications.
  • Funding: Italian Ministry of Health.

Key results

  • Genetic prediction of type 1 diabetes is feasible in families via diabetes-specific autoantibodies, but because there is currently no prevention approach, clinical usefulness is questionable....