Introducing the latest in pharmacogenetics testing, helping you identify the right medications for your body based on your genetics.
Imagine going to the doctor and getting a prescription. Will it give you any side effects? If there are multiple treatment options on the market for your condition, how will your doctor know if this is the best option?
Short answer: With a pharmacogenetics test, your doctor can pick the most suitable therapy for your condition with confidence and precision, minimizing the risk of side effects and the need for trial and error.
BioCertica’s Pharmacogenetics DNA test will help your doctor find the right medication without trial and error. And for you as their patient, this means getting on the most effective medication with minimal side effects sooner, saving you time and money and, most importantly, giving you a better quality of life.
BioCertica introduces a pharmacogenetics test that tests for up to 2000 genetic variants involved in gene-drug interactions. Genetic variants are pieces of DNA that differ between individuals, making us genetically different. These genetic variants can also functionally affect drug-metabolizing enzymes that further influence how the drug is absorbed, distributed and/or removed from the body. This is the main contributing factor to why an individual's response to drugs may differ from another. Studies have linked specific genetic variants to a potential outcome in drug response.
Our report covers many medications, including off-the-shelf, over-the-counter, prescription and controlled substances. We also provide South African and USA names for drugs for which these are available.
BioCertica’s pharmacogenetics test is available via the mobile app, where we present a very limited results segment. We encourage you to book a session with your practitioner to get full access to all the results.
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What can I expect from the DNA Pharmacogenetics?
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The science behind it
BioCertica provides genetic reports for 75 traits for which it assesses the genetic predisposition based on peer-reviewed scientific studies. These 75 traits are distributed across multiple topic-based packages, but you can read more about this in previous sections.
The critical question we want to answer here is how we estimate the genetic predisposition for those 75 traits. We are proud to inform you that we are the first African-based direct-to-consumer genetic testing company to estimate genetic predisposition to various traits and diseases using the polygenic risk scoring methodology.
We will tell you more about the polygenic risk scoring methodology in a bit. Before that, to underline that most of today’s genetic risk scoring reporting is based on individual genetic variants that are found to be associated with a given trait. For example, let’s say a genetic variant associated with whether you can detect bitter taste or not or similar traits controlled by single genetic variants.
The problem starts once you want to assess the genetic risk for so-called complex traits and diseases such as for example the genetic risk for heart attack. You might ask why. The problem with complex diseases is that those are not determined by one single gene but by dozens, hundreds, and even thousands of genetic variants, and not all of those genetic variants have equal contributions. In those cases, how do we estimate the risk for that kind of disease?
Well, to handle those complex traits, we at BioCertica, as already mentioned, implemented the polygenic risk score methodology. Polygenic risk scoring methodology leverages the wealth of scientific knowledge accumulated through hundreds of genome-wide association studies (GWAS). Thousands of individuals were tested in GWAS to identify genetic variants associated with any disease or trait. These studies are the bedrock for building polygenic risk scores for any trait. Important to note that here we talk about peer-reviewed studies published in the leading scientific journals.
For our purposes, we leverage two primary databases: the PGS Catalog and GWAS Catalog, that contain information about traits, studies, and genetic variants based on which we at BioCertica build our products. These databases are managed by leading scientific institutions such as European Molecular Biology Laboratory and European Bioinformatics Institute. In addition, traits and studies reported in these databases pass an additional layer of peer-reviewed process. This is the reason why we use these databases as the primary source for building our new products.
However, in order to leverage the potential of PGS and GWAS Catalogs, we at BioCertica had to develop a series of tools to enrich our originally produced genotype data from our users. This means that we implemented an in-house genotype imputation procedure to sufficiently enrich our users' genotype data to leverage the potential of the polygenic risk score methodology.
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