More athletes relying on genetic testing to tailor workouts despite meager scientific evidence

| | November 3, 2016
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This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Genetic analysis companies are forging alliances with personal trainers, chiropractors, and coaches around the world to market genomics tests that they say can help athletes at all levels tailor their workouts to their DNA.

Yet there is little science to back up the claims that a genetic analysis could identify if a particular athlete is, say, predisposed to benefit from a certain type of exercise, prone to tendon injuries, or wired to have trouble recovering from tough workouts.

“The notion that they’re somehow tailoring these recommendations on the basis of your DNA is nonsense,” [said Harvard geneticist Dr. Robert Green.]

That hasn’t stopped such claims from proliferating. The number of companies selling fitness-oriented consumer genetic tests grew to at least 39 [in 2015], nearly double the market size in 2013.

Despite the limitations of genetic analysis, other companies are still pushing these tests as powerful tools that can give athletes a winning edge.

Recreational athletes are one key market: “The lowest hanging fruit…are the millions of people who are trying to do something” about their weight or fitness, said Kurt Johnsen, CEO of Texas-based Simplified Genetics, which sells “Simply Fit” tests for $249 and $499.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: How genetic testing of dubious value is infiltrating the world of sports

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