At-home carrier testing

How it works, why now and what it means for you and your family.

What is Eugene's carrier testing?

An at-home genetic test for smarter family planning.

Eugene's carrier test is an at-home genetic test to see if you or your partner carry a gene variant that could cause a serious genetic disease in your child.

The common diseases we screen for include Cystic Fibrosis, Spinal Muscular Atrophy, Thalassemia, and Tay-Sachs disease, but there’s more than 100 others that are tested.

Relevant science things to know:

We all carry variants in our genes

These variants can affect how our bodies grow, develop and function.

Carrying variants is completely normal

We’re all different and we all carry these gene variants, most times we just don’t know about them.

Some variants can affect our children

If these variants are shared by both partners it can cause a serious genetic disease in their child.

If two people are carriers for the same disease, there’s a one in four chance that their children would be affected by this disease.

Carrier testing helps you understand these risks — if any.

Who is this test for?

Honestly, it's for everyone who wants to have a family one day.

Family history isn't everything

Most children born with an inherited genetic disease never had a family history of it. Obviously this often feels completely 'out of the blue' for the parents.

Genetic diseases don't discriminate

Our test includes many serious diseases that are more frequent in different ethnic communities are are often excluded in industry standard tests.

Individually rare, collectively common

When combined, the average risk of having a child with one of these diseases is higher than the risk of having a child with Down syndrome.

When should you do it?

Best before pregnancy.

It’s best to do this test before getting pregnant, because the test can predict if you have a higher risk of passing on a rare genetic disease. Knowing this in advance can help you make more informed pregnancy choices and even reduce their risk of passing on the disease.

Planning your pregnancy

Some consider their carrier status as partners, just before trying to get pregnant to make informed reproductive choices for their family.

Planning your future

Some consider their carrier status as important health information to incorporate in their plan for their future, long before they think about starting a family.

Planning your marriage

For many, having a natural pregnancy after a marriage is what’s most important. In this case, it’s important to know your carrier status before marriage.

What do we test for?

An ethical test that only includes serious and actionable diseases.

All diseases that are included in the Eugene carrier screen are:

  • Serious genetic diseases that can impact the child during an early stage of their life
  • Actionable – in that you can do something about it with the information that you get
Recessive diseases

If two people are carriers for the same condition, there’s a one in four chance that their children would have the disease.

More about recessive diseases
X-linked diseases

For x-linked conditions the sex of the parent who passes on the variant influences the risk for the children.

More about x-linked diseases
Our honesty policy

The (not so) fine print.

What this test CAN DO:
  • Help people better understand their risk and make informed pregnancy choices.
  • The majority of people are not carriers so it provides reassurance and peace of mind to most.
  • To those that are carriers, it helps them know their risk in advance and even prevent the disease in the first place.
  • Honestly, it helps people avoid the “wish I had known about this before” feeling that we are, unfortunately, all too familiar with.
What this test CANNOT DO:
  • Diagnose you, your partner, or your child with a genetic disease or condition.
  • Change your genetics in any way.
  • Affect your ability to get health insurance – phew.
  • Completely / 100% rule out the risk of passing on a disease.
  • Screen for down syndrome or autism.
  • Determine the sex of your child.

"Carrier screening for genetic diseases should be recommended to all couples planning a family, irrespective of whether they have a known family history."

Professor David Amor

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