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A Call For African Americans to Join a Study on Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

Posted: Jan. 18 2016
 The genetics testing company 23andME is looking for vounteers to join a study on how genes may affect the risk for Crohns Disease and other bowel diseases.

Scientists recognize that a person’s gender and ancestry play a large role in determining risk for certain diseases. For instance, Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), including both Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis, affects about 1.6 million Americans, and a recent study suggests 36% of those are African American – and the number of diagnosed African Americans continues to rise.


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There is very little those diagnosed with IBD can do and often, surgery is the only treatment available.

23andMe, a genetics testing company, is approaching IBD research in a new way. They are conducting an online study to understand how genes may influence IBD risk, progression and drug response. While over a third of those diagnosed with IBD are African American, African Americans currently represent less than 2% of 23andMe’s study population. African Americans are a critical demographic for understanding IBD, so 23andMe is interested in fixing this under-representation. They hope more African Americans with IBD will join the study.


Study participants receive the 23andMe® Personal Genome Service DNA test kit and related services at no cost and are eligible to receive compensation for completing study surveys.



To learn more and join the IBD study go