All too often we come across some new diagnostic methodology that researchers claim could be commercialized in just a few years. Typically these claims are the reason researchers stick to research and leave the commercialization to others (it’s never as simple as they claim). However, out of San Diego we have the story of Dr. John Kelsoe, who’s applying his genetic research on the genetic predictors of bipolar disorder to sell an at-home test kit for $399.
Not surprisingly, such a quick run to the marked has brought some dissenting opinions…
“People are always rushing to the market on the basis of one or two studies,” said Dr. Muin Khoury, director of the National Office of Public Health Genomics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “We have very little evidence that telling people their genetic information is going to make any difference.”
Kelsoe acknowledges the weaknesses of his product, but sees it more as a means to start a discussion between a patient and their doctor.
But [Kelsoe] said his test is a vital starting point toward moving away from the notoriously tricky practice of diagnosing bipolar disorder based purely on a person’s behavior.
“The goal of this is to try and help doctors make an accurate diagnosis more quickly so the patient can be treated appropriately,” Kelsoe said. “Anything is going to help, even if it just helps a little bit.”