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What young people think and do when the option for cystic fibrosis carrier testing is available.
  1. J Mitchell,
  2. C R Scriver,
  3. C L Clow,
  4. F Kaplan
  1. Department of Pediatrics, Montreal Children's Hospital, Canada.

    Abstract

    We report findings in phase II of a pilot study of cystic fibrosis (CF) carrier screening/testing by mutation analysis. Phase I has been reported elsewhere. Eligible participants in phase II (n = 815) were students (15 to 17 years of age) in public high schools. An educational component (exchange of information and discussion about common genetic disorders including CF) preceded, by one week or more, voluntary participation in the screening component which required a blood sample. The uptake rate for screening was 42%. Nine carriers (2pq = 0.0260) were identified, all with the delta F508 mutation; students were also tested for G551D, G542X, W1282X, and -549-mutations, but no carriers of these alleles were found. Carriers had positive views of the education and testing experiences. Persons identified as 'non-carriers' were also surveyed (n = 135, response rate 41%). As in phase I, the majority (83%) again understood that a negative DNA test had not excluded them from possible carrier status. Students who participated in the informational component but were not screened served here as controls in the follow up survey (n = 208, response rate 53%). Their views were similar to those of the screened non-carriers, and similar also to those held by students, adults, pregnant women, couples, and CF relatives in other communities.

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