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Someday, Someday

While many enthusiasts say that genome sequencing can be beneficial to all — it can uncover one's risk of developing various diseases — others argue it's not quite ready for such widespread use, USA Today reports.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Muin Khoury tells the paper that it's not quite time for population-level screening. "You're going to find a lot of things you don't know what to do with," he adds. "Most of it is noise."

Harvard Medical School's George Church, meanwhile, argues that there's no reason not to get sequenced, as it could help some people avoid developing disease. He himself has been sequenced. In addition, he tells USA Today that if someone is wary of learning his or her risk of developing a disease for which nothing can be done, like Alzheimer's, that person can ask for that result to not be revealed.

But, Eric Dishman, who underwent sequencing when ill, says genome sequencing might not be ready for wide use. He had both his tumor and normal tissue sequenced when he ran out of options for treating his kidney cancer. That testing revealed a mutation that's more common in pancreatic cancers in his tumor for which there was a targeted therapy. While sequencing helped him, he tells the paper that he worries that some people might have unrealistic expectation about what sequencing may deliver. He adds at USA Today, though, that he's hopeful that screening everyone will someday be justified.

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