Ten Truths of Genetic Screening

May 14, 2015


As we celebrate the giving of the Torah (Old Testament) during the Festival of Shavuot, we will read the Ten Commandments aloud as part of this joyous holiday in order to reaffirm our covenant with the Torah and its laws.

So while you are filling yourself with cheesecake and blintzes, take a look at our own ‘Top 10’ list highlighting important factoids about genetic screening.


Ten Truths of Jewish Genetic Screening:

1. Even if you have no family history of a genetic disease, it’s still essential to get screened since 80% of babies born with a genetic disease have no family history of that disease.

2. It’s very common to be a carrier for a recessive genetic disease. The best way to find out is to take action and get screened!

3. Interfaith couples are still at risk.

4. Even if only one of your grandparents is Jewish, screening is still important for you.

5. People with Ashkenazi, Sephardic or Mizrahi background all have higher likelihood to be carriers for certain genetic diseases.

6. There are a lot more genetic diseases in addition to Tay-Sachs, so make sure your screening panel is up-to-date.

7. EACH pregnancy is at an independent risk, so those who are having additional children should make sure to get screened or to update their screening.

8. You can accurately screen saliva using state of the art genetic sequencing technology.

9. The best time to get screened is before pregnancy.

10. Even if both partners are carriers for the same disease gene, there are many options available to help them plan ahead for a healthy family.


In keeping with the theme of ‘10’, share this post with ten of your friends to positively impact their future!


Hillary is the Assistant Director of Outreach and Marketing for JScreen. She is creating awareness around the importance of genetic screening throughout the country, and has been featured in magazines, newspapers, and television for her valuable work. She is also a published author, and is very active in multiple charitable organizations, as she values community involvement. She enjoys traveling, playing tennis, and fashion.