How Accurate are DNA tests?

Exactly how accurate are DNA tests, and how much can your genetic data really reveal about you? To find out, we asked a molecular biologist.

With genetic testing for health, ancestry, paternity and more becoming increasingly popular, many people are left wondering: exactly how accurate are DNA tests? Whether you are taking a DNA test to build your extended DNA family tree with an AncestryDNA(opens in new tab) testing kit, or want precise information on hereditary health conditions with 23andMe(opens in new tab), it is important to understand how accurate genetic tests are, and what information we can rely upon.  

How accurate DNA tests are relies greatly upon the kind of test being taken. “The accuracy of results depends on the specific question we ask, and on how complex is the genetics behind a trait,” Sergio Pistoi, a molecular biologist and author of “DNA Nation(opens in new tab)” (Crux Publishing, 2019), told Live Science. For example, tests for traits that depend on a single gene, called monogenic traits, provide much more reliable results, because you can see whether a disease-causing mutation or another trait is present.   Read Full Article: