Asthma Diagnosis Improved Using Genetic Ancestry Data

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In a study reported in the New England Journal of Medicine this month the researchers concluded “Our findings show that accounting for genetic ancestry improves prediction of normal lung function over the simple race-based classification. ” They continue on to say this may result in reclassification of the severity in many lung diseases including asthma. In the study of more than 3,000 patients ranging in age from 18 to 93 they found the precise genetic background was more useful than the self-identified racial profile commonly used in determining lung function and lung damage. Such knowledge is useful for diagnosing the severity of asthma and eligibility for various treatments.

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