Fulgent Genetics, CUIMC partner on expanded carrier screening
Fulgent Genetics and the Precision Genomics Laboratory, or PGL, in collaboration with the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, at Columbia University Irving Medical Center, or CUIMC, announced a new partnership to make on site performed, expanded carrier screening available to Columbia patients. This collaboration will leverage both parties' expertise in laboratory management, bioinformatics, clinical genetics and sequencing to deliver an expanded carrier screening test. The PGL is jointly operated by the Institute for Genomic Medicine, or IGM, and the Department of Pathology and Cell Biology and is designed to enhance patient care through genomic diagnostics, research, and education at CUIMC. Carrier screening is a genetic test used to identify whether individuals and carrier couples are at risk for passing genetic disorders to their children. These genetic disorders may result in physical disabilities, cognitive impairment, and other severe health problems in newborn babies. Traditionally, carrier screening tests targeted couples of certain ethnic groups that have historically been at higher risk for specific genetic disorders. This approach has presented difficulties for patients who are multiracial, adopted or are unsure of their ethnic backgrounds. To address this challenge, expanded carrier screening was developed to test for mutations that cause hundreds of different genetic disorders regardless of a patient's ethnicity.