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ActX Releases New 'Traits' Feature

Beyond its medical impact, learn more about how genetics can impact your daily life with Traits, ActX's newest feature. Traits are a beta feature and we are starting out with four reports: male pattern baldness, norovirus susceptibility, bitter taste sensitivity, and caffeine sensitivity. Visit your Genomic Profile today to see your Traits.



What are Traits?

Your DNA defines many physical and behavioral characteristics, known as Traits, which are not necessarily medically important, but still useful to know. From your eye color to the way certain foods taste to you, your genes play a central role. ActX's new feature focuses on four interesting Traits. These are being provided as a beta feature, and we welcome your feedback about them.

What can I learn about my Traits?

Male pattern baldness: About 50% of men experience some degree of hair loss by age 50. Male pattern baldness usually manifests as a receding hairline near the temples and thinning at the crown. Although many factors influence hair loss, a large number of men are at an increased risk due to their genetics. Find out if you're an increased risk for male pattern baldness.

Caffeine consumption: In the U.S., the average person drinks around two cups of coffee per day. The amount of coffee you consume is influenced by your genes. Your genes affect both your ability to metabolize caffeine and your sensitivity to it. Caffeine can also improve mood and concentration and reduce feelings of stress in some people, although these effects depend on the amount of caffeine that a person consumes. If someone has too much caffeine, it can have negative effects, such as insomnia, increased nervousness, and anxiety. Discover how your genes impact your caffeine consumption.

Norovirus resistance: Norovirus is one of the viral causes of gastro-intestinal upset known as “stomach” flu. Symptoms can include two to three days of nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. A highly contagious illness, it is one of the main causes of gastro-intestinal upset on cruise ships. 20%-25% of people have genetic variants that make them relatively resistant to this virus. Learn more about your genetic resistance to norovirus.

Bitter taste sensitivity: Some people are very sensitive to bitter tasting foods, others are not. Genetics can help account for these differences. For those with a "super taster" variant, their results may explain why they don't enjoy the taste of bitter foods and drinks like coffee, alcohol, broccoli, kale or asparagus. Explore your taste buds through your DNA.

How do I access my Traits?

To access your Traits, log into your ActX account and click "See your genomic profile." Within the profile, click the "Traits" tab to view your Traits. Please note that because of gender and other factors, not everyone will see information on the four beta traits.

If you are experiencing difficulty accessing your Traits, contact us.

For Physicians:

Traits is intended to help educate patients about genomics. These results do not have a significant clinical impact, so they will not appear in the clinical patient Genomic Profile. If you do wish to access your patient's Traits, a link is available under the patient-specific Alerts tab when you enter their Genomic Profile on the web, or in the header of the patient Genomic Profile within an Electronic Health Record.

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