Color Genomics is a genetic testing company available online through Color.com. Find out of their screening tests are worth it today in our review.
What is Color Genomics?
Color Genomics, found online at Color.com, can analyze your genes to determine your risk of different types of cancers and diseases.
The basic Color test kit costs $250 and will analyze 30 genes (including BRCA 1 and BRCA 2) associated with an increased risk of the most common hereditary cancers.
You can’t order Color tests yourself. They must be ordered by a physician. After your test is received and your sample is analyzed, a physician will go over the results with you to explain their importance. Color can speed up the testing process when you sign up through the official website today. They even provide you with your own physician who can help understand the results of your test.
Types of Color Tests
The goal of Color is to screen your genes for hereditary cancers. Those types of cancers vary in men and women, including:
- Color for Women: Learn your genetic risk of breast, ovarian, colorectal, and other common hereditary cancers.
- Color for Men: Learn your genetic risk of colorectal, pancreatic, prostate, and other common hereditary cancers.
Why Get a Color Test?
Color claims that 10 to 15% of cancers in men and women are caused by inherited genetic mutations. An additional 5 to 15% of cancers are familial cancers, which refers to cancers that occur more frequently in families than is excepted from chance alone, although no specific mutation has been linked to those cancers.
The final and largest group of cancers are called sporadic cancers. 70 to 80% of cancers are sporadic, which means they occur due to spontaneous mutations that occur over a person’s life. These changes can be caused by environmental exposure, aging, and lifestyle choices.
Obviously, with your get a Color Genomics test, you’re testing for the 10 to 15% of cancers caused by inherited genetic mutations.
Color admits that “mutations in the genes covered by the Color Test are not common”. That means most tests will reveal that you have no chance of passing mutations onto your offspring (or developed hereditary cancers yourself). That being said, when those mutations are present, it can significantly increase your chances of cancer. Here’ show Color explains it,
“For example, a BRCA1 mutation can increase a woman’s chance of breast cancer up to 81% by age 80. An APC gene mutation can increase a man or woman's chances of colorectal cancer up to 70-100% by age 80 without surgical intervention.”
When you detect cancer early, it dramatically increases your chances of survival. Knowing that you have a mutation allows you and your healthcare provider to create a personalized screening plan. If you have a hereditary mutation for breast cancer, for example, then you may wish to get mammograms more frequently than women without that mutation.
You can view the full list of tested genes here https://www.color.com/learn/the-science , including the specific types of cancers they’re linked to.
How the Color Test Works
The Color Test analyzes 30 genes, including BRCA1 and BRCA2. These 30 genes are the genes most susceptible to hereditary mutations linked to cancer.
The specific mutations vary between men and women. In men, for example, an APC gene mutation can increase the chances of colorectal cancer up to 70 to 100% by age 80 if left untreated. Mutations in the CDH1 gene are linked to stomach cancer, while mutations in the BRCA2 gene are linked to prostate cancer.
In women, mutations in the BRCA1 gene are linked to breast cancer, while mutations in the APC gene are linked to colorectal cancer (just like in men).
After your test is complete, your doctor will receive your test results. At this point, you’ll learn whether you carry a genetic mutation – or if you test negative. In either case, you receive valuable information about your genetic profile and your chances of developing cancer. As Color explains,
“If a relative carries a genetic mutation and your results indicate that you do not have the same mutation, you can be confident that you did not inherit it.”
When you don’t inherit a mutation, you can’t pass that mutation onto your kids.
Color Test Pricing
The Color Test is priced at $249. Your purchase comes with:
- Comprehensive analysis of 30 genes associated with an increased risk of the most common hereditary cancers (including breast, colorectal, melanoma, ovarian, pancreatic, prostate, stomach, and uterine cancers)
- Analysis of your personal and family health history to better inform your results
- Consultation with a board-certified genetic counselor from Color (every Color Test is physician-ordered)
- Easy tools for sharing the results with your healthcare provider
You can purchase your Color Test online through Color.com. You’ll need to create an account first.
In addition to the basic testing kits, Color has special packages for employers and families. Visa and the Sacramento Kings, for example, are two organizations that have partnered with Color to offer genetic testing to their employees.
The company has also created a program called the Every Woman Program, where they’ve partnered with top cancer centers like the University of California San Francisco and the University of Washington Medical Center. The program aims to ensure genetic testing “is available to all women and men – regardless of their financial situation.”
How to Complete the Color Test
Step 1) Purchase your kit online (it’s a physician-ordered test), and the kit will be shipped to your home immediately
Step 2) Provide a saliva sample in the tube provided in your kit
Step 3) Receive your results online (after your results are reviewed by a certified medical professional, they’ll be sent to you by email; then, you can setup an appointment with one of Color’s genetic counselors at no extra cost)
Step 4) Create a plan with your provider
About Color Genomics
Color Genomics is based in the Bay Area of San Francisco, California.
You can get in touch with the company by phone at (844) 352-6567 or by email at [email protected].
Color Genomics uses custom-built software and a state-of-the-art, automated CAP-accredited, CLIA-certified laboratory to test your genetic information with a high level of accuracy and at a reasonable price.
The company’s team includes geneticists from UCSF, Stanford, and MIT, along with clinical lab experts from Penn, UCSF, Illumina, Complete Genomics, and Agendia. The Color Genomics Scientific Advisory Board also includes Mary-Claire King, Ph.D., the scientist who discovered CRCA1, as well as Tom Walsh Ph.D., another leading cancer geneticist.
Should You Take the Color Genomics Test?
The Color Test is one of many popular genetic tests available on the market today. It tests 30 genes to specifically screen for hereditary cancer indicators. Unlike other (higher-priced) genetic tests, it doesn’t test your whole genome and provide you with an overwhelming amount of information. Instead, it tests your genetic information for specific mutations to determine your risk of deadly hereditary cancers.
For most people, the Color Test will indicate that they’re not at a higher risk of any genetic cancers. However, tests that come back with positive results can lead to the creation of an action plan that improves your chances of early screening. The earlier you detect cancer, the better your odds are.
The fact that Color gives you complementary physician appointments after your test is a nice touch, as it allows you to understand what that information means for you – and how you can use that information to improve your longevity. To order your Color Test today, visit Color.com.