Genetic testing for disease and risk of disease is becoming increasingly common worldwide. This is in part due to the dramatic fall in sequencing costs, enabling greater exploration and understanding of the role of genetics in disease.

As companies race to get new products on the market, an interesting trend has emerged. While historically genetic testing has focused on cancer, recent years have seen a dramatic shift in the market towards genetic testing for neurological diseases. While in 2015, neurological tests accounted for only 5% of available products, this has now increased to 9%, according to GlobalData.

genetic testing

Manufacturers turn towards neurology genetic testing

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This shift towards genetic testing coincides with an increase in R&D investment for neurological therapies, with more drugs becoming available that target symptoms caused by disorders of the central nervous system. While many of these therapies will not have great effect on patients who have already been diagnosed with a neurological disease, genetic testing of high-risk individuals could identify those patients who might benefit from preventative measures or beginning early treatment.

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With an aging population and high awareness of neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, GlobalData expects this trend to continue over the coming years, with an increased emphasis on preventative measures for neurological disorders.