The mission of Pathway Genomics, founded by Jim Plante, is to help consumers receive more personalized wellness and medical strategies with the help of comprehensive genetic testing. The goal also is to make these services significantly more affordable so everyone can have access.
Mr. Plante has a particular interest in genetics since a hereditary disorder, polycystic kidney disease, runs in his family. With early knowledge of genetic risk, people may be able to take preventive actions that delay or prevent the onset of the disease. For example, knowing that one has gene variations that increase the risk of colon cancer can motivate this person to have colonoscopies as recommended instead of avoiding the process.
Consumers also can learn other aspects of their genetics related to health and wellness. Gene variations provide a myriad of helpful information, in ways one might never expect. For instance, gene variations can even show whether someone is better suited for staying up late at night and sleeping into the late morning, characteristic of people that are called night owls. Instead of spending their life struggling with 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. jobs, they might look for positions with more schedule flexibility or second shift options.
Diet and Exercise
Genetic testing can be used to identify a person’s likely response to certain types of diet and exercise, as well as metabolic health indicators. This information can make it easier for a person to lose weight by making the best modifications to the current nutritional plan and fitness regimen.
Genetic tests also can indicate a certain level of gluten sensitivity. The person may have been feeling frustrated because testing for celiac disease turned out to be negative, yet this individual has known for a long time that eating wheat does not agree with his or her digestive system.
The medical-related tests can only be ordered by a physician. The person’s doctor may strongly encourage the patient to have sessions with a genetic counselor before and after the results are provided. Counseling can help the person make plans about what to do if the results show heightened risk for a serious disease.