Last updated: December 14, 2018
Thank you for your interest in MyStrongBones, a MyVytalics product. This Informed Consent gives you information to help you decide if you would like to utilize the MyStrongBones application. Please read this Consent Form carefully. To get started you must agree to the provisions in the MyStrongBones Informed Consent (below). All terms used in this document are used as defined in the terms of service.
- What does taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test involve?
- What’s the science behind the service?
- Does MyStrongBones tell me about my health or ancestry?
- What are the potential risks to taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test?
- What are the potential benefits to taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test?
- How does MyVytalics keep my genetic information confidential and private?
- Who can I contact if I have questions?
MyStrongBones is a web-based application that delivers information about how your genetic makeup affects your bone strength, and joint quality.
What does taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test involve?
- If you have not already had your DNA sequenced by Helix (our partner laboratory), Helix will send you an easy-to-use saliva collection kit in the mail, so you can submit a sample of your saliva for DNA sequencing.
- Helix will provide MyVytalics with your genetic information for a specific set of genes that relate to bone strength, joint quality, and response to nutrients. MyVytalics applies an algorithm to the genetic information to generate your MyStrongBones results.
- MyVytalics notifies you by email when your results are ready. You can access your results and most of MyStrongBones’s features using your web browser on almost any device.
What’s the science behind the service?
Your DNA is in each one of your cells. DNA is a thin, long molecule; if stretched out, the DNA in each of your cells would be over six feet long. DNA is made up of a string of chemicals known as bases. There are four types of bases, called A, C, G and T for short. A string of just over 3 billion of these bases makes the human DNA, also called the “human genome.” The order of these bases in the long DNA molecule is called the “DNA Sequence.” The order of these bases spell out the instructions to make you. Amazingly, 99.9% of your DNA is identical to any other human on the planet. However, this small difference in DNA sequence between individuals is what helps make us unique.
Scientific studies indicate that bone strength is a trait with a significant hereditary component (60-80% hereditary contribution). Research over the last decade has identified both common and rare alleles associated with bone density and fracture. In addition, it is estimated that approximately 50% of hip joint quality is influenced by genetics. Also, it is widely recognized that Vitamin D is crucial for musculoskeletal health. Key determinants of Vitamin D levels are sun exposure and diet, but genetic factors also play a role.
The scientists at MyVytalics reviewed dozens of studies involving tens of thousands of people from a variety of ethnic backgrounds. Of the genetic variants identified in the studies, they selected the ones that were most strongly associated with bone and joint well-being. MyVytalics reports your DNA variants and their potential association to your skeletal well-being. MyVytalics also reports on DNA variants associated with Vitamin D, an essential nutrient for bone strength.
Does MyStrongBones tell me about my health or ancestry?
The DNA analysis used to power the MyStrongBones service does not look at or report genetic variations that have a known impact on your health or any medical conditions. All MyStrongBones results are for information purposes only and should not be used for any health-related interpretations or decisions. Further, the MyStrongBones service does not provide information about your ancestry.
What are the potential risks to taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test?
The risks of taking the MyStrongBones DNA test are minimal. There are no known risks of providing a saliva sample.
When MyVytalics scientists publish results from their research, they may include your genetic and survey data but only as part of a summary of results to minimize the chance that your personal information will be exposed.
Genetics is an evolving science, so it may be that we learn something unexpected about the genetic risks of your skeletal well-being that you may not want to know.
There may be risks that are not known at this time.
What are the potential benefits to taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test?
Taking the MyStrongBones DNA Test will allow you to learn more about how your genetic makeup may affect the strength of your bones and the quality of your joints. You may also choose to engage in community activities, where you can share your MyStrongBones results through social media or other means. All community activities are completely voluntary, and participation can be stopped at any time.
If you have not yet had your DNA sequenced by Helix, your MyStrongBones purchase will give you access to the Helix marketplace, where you can purchase more DNA-powered products from a variety of categories like fitness, nutrition, and entertainment.
How does MyVytalics keep my genetic information confidential and private?
Who can I contact if I have questions?
By checking the box next to “I have read and understand the MyStrongBones Informed Consent” during the MyStrongBones registration process, you consent and agree to the following:
- You are at least 18 years old.
- You allow Helix to share with MyVytalics your genetic information for the specific genetic markers required to provide MyStrongBones results.
- You allow MyVytalics to retain your MyStrongBones data as part of MyVytalics’s secure database, for use by MyVytalics or its research affiliates, to improve and expand services. If any commercial product is developed because of the use of your data, there will be no financial benefit to you.
You may receive communications from MyVytalics to keep you current on new information relevant to your MyStrongBones results or other products that may be of interest to you. You may choose to opt out of receiving these emails.
1 Estrada, K. et al. Genome-wide meta-analysis identifies 56 bone mineral density loci and reveals 14 loci associated with risk of fracture. Nat Genet 44, 491-501, doi:10.1038/ng.2249 (2012).
2 Hackinger, S. et al. Evaluation of shared genetic aetiology between osteoarthritis and bone mineral density identifies SMAD3 as a novel osteoarthritis risk locus. Hum Mol Genet 26, 3850-3858, doi:10.1093/hmg/ddx285 (2017).
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11 Duncan, E. L. et al. Genome-wide association study using extreme truncate selection identifies novel genes affecting bone mineral density and fracture risk. PLoS Genet 7, e1001372, doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1001372 (2011).
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13 Wang, T. J. et al. Common genetic determinants of vitamin D insufficiency: a genome-wide association study. Lancet 376, 180-188, doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(10)60588-0 (2010).
14 Manousaki, D. et al. Low-Frequency Synonymous Coding Variation in CYP2R1 Has Large Effects on Vitamin D Levels and Risk of Multiple Sclerosis. Am J Hum Genet 101, 227-238, doi:10.1016/j.ajhg.2017.06.014 (2017).
15 Lips, P. & van Schoor, N. M. The effect of vitamin D on bone and osteoporosis. Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab 25, 585-591, doi:10.1016/j.beem.2011.05.002 (2011).