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Understanding the Genetics and Statistics Behind Polygenic Scores

October 24, 2022 - 4:00 pm

Naomi Wray, PhD, Professor, Institute for Molecular Bioscience and Queensland Brain Institute, University of Queensland, Australia

The last decade of research has provided overwhelming evidence that common diseases (heart disease, cancers, immune disorder, diabetes, disorders of the gut, psychiatric disorders) are polygenic, which means there are hundreds of DNA variants associated with risk, individually of small effect. A predictor of risk can be calculated for an individual by counting the number of risk alleles they carry. Since DNA is the same at birth as in later life, this polygenic score can be calculated long before disease symptom are observed. Therefore, it could have clinical utility, but like many other risk predictors used in medicine it has error associated with it. Professor Wray describe the key genetic and statistics features of polygenic scores to aid evaluation of their implementation and assessment of the related ethical/social issues.

Seminar on Ethical, Legal and Social Implications of Genetics

Monday, October 24, 2022 •  4:00 pm – 5:00pm

To register and receive the Zoom link, please email Alfa Garcia