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JScreen Jewish DNA Testing
Are you a Jewish Ashkenazi descent and planning to start a family? Jewish Life Television explains the important facts and things that you need to consider before having your own offspring. They have featured JScreen, the at-home genetic screening initiative led by Emory University to end genetic diseases, on The J Report with Brad Pomerance. As you go through this article, you will be able to understand the significance of being genetically tested.
There had been many debates about the actual population of the population of Jewish people but a final answer came to light and the final answer is 14,000, 000 overall of which 80% are Jewish Ashkenazi or Eastern European Jews descendants. In 1400 the Jewish population numbered to only 20,000 and up to the last century Jews intermarried at the rate of only .50% per generation, so the 11million and over Jewish people today are all descent from those 20,000 forefathers.
If you have Ashkenazi Jewish background then it means that you are prone to 19 inherited diseases common on that root and this is because of the thing called “founders’ effect”. This is due to a practice of intermarriage within the net group which causes genes to be more prevalent in that group. Some familiar diseases that may be familiar to you are Fragile X, cystic fibrosis, Gaucher disease, Canavan disease, Bloom Syndrome, Familial Dysautonomia and Joubert syndrome. These diseases are not really important to you but what may make you learn about them is if your future child might be affected. How does one know that he/she is affected by these conditions known as autosomal recessive diseases?
If you are just a carrier, you will not develop this in your later life, but the real problem is the risk that your child might be affected if your partner is also a carrier. If both parents are positive with the same disease then there’s a 25% chance that their child might be affected. So how will each couple know that they are carriers?
Jscreen is a genetic screening afterward based at Emory University in Atlanta. They make it possible for people to have access to genetic screening at home, educate them and receive their results without having to go through community screening program or doctor’s office. Interested potential screeners just have to go to website www.jscreen.org. They will be able to watch videos, be educated, go to consent process and give vital information about themselves. Saliva testing kits will be sent to their home afterwards to collect your sample. They could finally get their results within two weeks after sending back the test kits. When their results are ready, they will receive an email that tells them whether they are positive or not and to have a schedule of appointment for genetic counselling through telephone or through secure video conferencing and learn about their results.
There are many options that you can do once you find out if you are positive. Doing something is better than doing nothing especially when it comes to the future of your child. Preparation is always the best weapon.