Which Disease and Individual-Based Factors Predict Intentions to Undergo Whole Genome Sequencing?


Purpose: The past decade has seen rapid acceleration in the public’s access to Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) technology, however, factors that may influence a person’s decision to undergo this complex health screening have received little empirical attention. This is the first psychosocial study to investigate which disease and individual-based factors predict intention to undergo WGS. Methods: A total of 164 first-year university students responded to hypothetical disease scenarios (varied by disease penetrance and treatment availability) and completed self-report measures of individual factors. Results: Intention to undergo WGS was significantly higher in the presence of available treatment and high disease penetrance (p < 0.05). There was also a significant interaction between treatment and disease penetrance on intention (p < 0.001). Task self-efficacy, positive outcome expectancy and attitude towards uncertainty all significantly predicted WGS intention (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Treatability and disease penetrance appear to be two distinct motivations that can also interact to influence intention to pursue WGS. Task self-efficacy, positive outcome expectancies and uncertainty avoidance are likely to motivate intention to pursue WGS in young healthy adults. These findings will be useful in informing the optimal design of WGS psycho-educational resources and screening provider protocols.

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Kiln, F. , Fisher, A. and Juraskova, I. (2014) Which Disease and Individual-Based Factors Predict Intentions to Undergo Whole Genome Sequencing?. International Journal of Clinical Medicine, 5, 1248-1260. doi: 10.4236/ijcm.2014.520159.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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