Advertisement

Journal of Cancer Education

, Volume 30, Issue 4, pp 799–807 | Cite as

Public Awareness of Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Tests: Findings from the 2013 U.S. Health Information National Trends Survey

  • Tanya Agurs-CollinsEmail author
  • Rebecca Ferrer
  • Allison Ottenbacher
  • Erika A. Waters
  • Mary E. O’Connell
  • Jada G. Hamilton
Article

Abstract

Although the availability of direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing has increased in recent years, the general public’s awareness of this testing is not well understood. This study examined levels of public awareness of DTC genetic testing, sources of information about testing, and psychosocial factors associated with awareness of testing in the USA. Data were obtained from the nationally representative 2013 U.S. Health Information National Trends Survey. Guided by a social-cognitive conceptual framework, univariable and multivariable logistic regressions were conducted to identify factors associated with awareness of DTC genetic tests. Of 3185 participants, 35.6 % were aware of DTC genetic tests, with the majority learning about these tests through radio, television, and the Internet. In the final adjusted model, participants with annual incomes of $99,999 or less had lower odds of being aware of DTC genetic testing (ORs ranging from 0.46–0.61) than did those participants with incomes of $100,000 or more. The odds of awareness of DTC genetic tests were significantly higher for those who actively seek cancer information (OR = 1.91, 95 % CI = 1.36–2.69), use the Internet (OR = 1.81, 95 % CI = 1.05–3.13), and have high numeracy skills (OR = 1.67, 95 % CI = 1.17–2.38). It will be critical for healthcare researchers and practitioners to understand predictors and consequences of the public’s awareness of DTC genetic tests, as well as how such awareness may translate into DTC genetic testing uptake, health behavior change, and ultimately disease prevention.

Keywords

HINTS Direct-to-consumer genetic testing Behavioral research Psychosocial 

Notes

Conflict of Interest

The authors have no conflicts of interests or financial interests to disclose.

References

  1. 1.
    Frueh FW, Greely HT, Green RC, Hogarth S, Siegel S (2011) The future of direct-to-consumer clinical genetic tests. Nat Rev Genet 12:511–515PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Global Industry Analysts (2012) Future of Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) Genetic Testing Market Remains Fraught. PRWeb Internet. Available at: http://www.prweb.com/releases/DTC_genetic_testing/direct_to_consumer_tests/prweb9780295.htm
  3. 3.
    Lewis NP, Treise D, Hsu SI, Allen WL, Kang H (2011) DTC genetic testing companies fail transparency prescriptions. New Genet Soc 30:291–307CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    U.S.Food and Drug Administration. (2014) Warning letter, 23andMe, Inc. 11/22/13. Inspections, compliance, enforcement, and criminal investigations. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/EnforcementActions/WarningLetters/2013/ucm376296.htm
  5. 5.
    U.S.Food and Drug Administration (14 A.D.) FDA takes steps to help ensure the reliability of certain diagnostic tests. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm407321.htm
  6. 6.
    Langford AT, Resnicow K, Roberts JS, Zikmund-Fisher BJ (2012) Racial and ethnic differences in direct-to-consumer genetic tests awareness in HINTS 2007: sociodemographic and numeracy correlates. J Genet Couns 21:440–447CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Finney Rutten LJ, Gollust SE, Naveed S, Moser RP (2012) Increasing public awareness of direct-to-consumer genetic tests: health care access, internet use, and population density correlates. J Cancer Epidemiol 2012:309109PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Kolor K, Duquette D, Zlot A et al (2012) Public awareness and use of direct-to-consumer personal genomic tests from four state population-based surveys, and implications for clinical and public health practice. Genet Med 14:860–867CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Foster C, Evans DG, Eeles R et al (2002) Predictive testing for BRCA1/2: attributes, risk perception and management in a multi-centre clinical cohort. Br J Cancer 86:1209–1216PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Kelly KM, Andrews JE, Case DO, Allard SL, Johnson JD (2007) Information seeking and intentions to have genetic testing for hereditary cancers in rural and Appalachian Kentuckians. J Rural Health 23:166–172CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Leighton JW, Valverde K, Bernhardt BA (2011) The general public's understanding and perception of direct-to-consumer genetic test results. Public Health GenomicsGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Lea DH, Kaphingst KA, Bowen D, Lipkus I, Hadley DW (2011) Communicating genetic and genomic information: health literacy and numeracy considerations. Public Health Genomics 14:279–289PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Caulfield T, Ries NM, Ray PN, Shuman C, Wilson B (2010) Direct-to-consumer genetic testing: good, bad or benign? Clin Genet 77:101–105CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Cameron LD, Sherman KA, Marteau TM, Brown PM (2009) Impact of genetic risk information and type of disease on perceived risk, anticipated affect, and expected consequences of genetic tests. Health Psychol 28:307–316CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Glanz K, Grove J, Lerman C, Gotay C, Le ML (1999) Correlates of intentions to obtain genetic counseling and colorectal cancer gene testing among at-risk relatives from three ethnic groups. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 8:329–336PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    National Cancer Institute (2014) Health Information National Trends Survey 4 (HINTS 4): Cycle 3 Methodology Report. In Westat (Ed.). Rockville, MD: National Cancer InstituteGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Weiss BD, Mays MZ, Martz W et al (2005) Quick assessment of literacy in primary care: the newest vital sign. Ann Fam Med 3:514–522PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Su P (2013) Direct-to-consumer genetic testing: a comprehensive view. Yale J Biol Med 86:359–365PubMedCentralPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Waters EA, Muff J, Hamilton JG (2014) Multifactorial beliefs about the role of genetics and behavior in common health conditions: prevalence and associations with participant characteristics and engagement in health behaviors. Genet Med 16:913–921CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Cline RJ, Haynes KM (2001) Consumer health information seeking on the Internet: the state of the art. Health Educ Res 16:671–692CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Smerecnik C, Quaak M, van Schayck CP, van Schooten FJ, De Vries H (2011) Are smokers interested in genetic testing for smoking addiction? A socio-cognitive approach. Psychol Health 26:1099–1112CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Kaphingst KA, Lachance CR, Condit CM (2009) Beliefs about heritability of cancer and health information seeking and preventive behaviors. J Cancer Educ 24:351–356PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Chen Y, Feeley TH (2014) Numeracy, information seeking, and self-efficacy in managing health: an analysis using the 2007 Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS). Health Commun 29:843–853CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Graves KD, Peshkin BN, Luta G, Tuong W, Schwartz MD (2011) Interest in genetic testing for modest changes in breast cancer risk: implications for SNP testing. Public Health Genomics 14:178–189PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Hanoch Y, Miron-Shatz T, Rolison JJ, Ozanne E (2014) Understanding of BRCA1/2 genetic tests results: the importance of objective and subjective numeracy. PsychooncologyGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York (outside the USA) 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tanya Agurs-Collins
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rebecca Ferrer
    • 1
  • Allison Ottenbacher
    • 2
  • Erika A. Waters
    • 3
  • Mary E. O’Connell
    • 1
  • Jada G. Hamilton
    • 4
  1. 1.Behavioral Research Program, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of HealthU.S. Department of Health and Human ServicesBethesdaUSA
  2. 2.Dr. Susan Love Research FoundationSanta MonicaUSA
  3. 3.Division of Public Health Sciences, Department of Surgery, Siteman Cancer CenterWashington University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA
  4. 4.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesMemorial Sloan Kettering Cancer CenterNew YorkUSA

Personalised recommendations