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Adding More SNPs to Breast Cancer Risk Models Doesn't Help

In the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers from the National Cancer Institute say breast cancer risk assessment models don't perform any better when they include common inherited genetic variants linked to the disease. The study's senior investigator, Sholom Wacholder, says the improvement in the risk models wasn't enough to matter to a majority of women. Wacholder and his team combined data from five studies, altogether including 5,590 breast cancer patients and 5,998 healthy women. Then they examined the predictive accuracy of the Gail model – using information on a woman's personal health and reproductive history to estimate the risk of developing breast cancer within the next 5 years, or over a lifetime – and tested the accuracy of a model using SNPs and found they each worked as well as the other. An inclusive model using both SNPs and Gail factors performed only slightly better than either model alone.

The Scan

Fertility Fraud Found

Consumer genetic testing has uncovered cases of fertility fraud that are leading to lawsuits, according to USA Today.

Ties Between Vigorous Exercise, ALS in Genetically At-Risk People

Regular strenuous exercise could contribute to motor neuron disease development among those already at genetic risk, Sky News reports.

Test Warning

The Guardian writes that the US regulators have warned against using a rapid COVID-19 test that is a key part of mass testing in the UK.

Science Papers Examine Feedback Mechanism Affecting Xist, Continuous Health Monitoring for Precision Medicine

In Science this week: analysis of cis confinement of the X-inactive specific transcript, and more.