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Jewish Dating: Genetic screening

May 22nd, 2019 Blog Writer

Jewish Dating Concerns: Facts and the Importance of Genetic Screening during the Jewish Dating process

Here are the facts and myths regarding Genetic testing, and how important it is to be aware of when in the Jewish Dating Process

By Hillary Kener

  • Carriers are usually healthy and don’t have symptoms. Being a carrier of a recessive genetic disease doesn’t mean that you have it, but are at risk to pass it on to your children if your partner is also a carrier. The only way to know if you’re a carrier is to get tested, or to have an affected child.
  • 80% of babies born with a devastating genetic disease have no family history of that disease. This makes carrier screening important for everyone not just those that are part of the Jewish Dating process.
  • There are many Jewish genetic diseases, not just Tay-Sachs. With advances in technology, screening is now available to identify carriers for many diseases that occur with increased frequency in the Ashkenazi, Mizrahi, and Sephardic communities. Examples include Familial Dysautonomia, Inclusion Body Myopathy, and Gaucher disease.
  • You’re Sephardic or Mizrahi so it doesn’t affect you- not true! There are many diseases that are common in these groups as well.
  • Each pregnancy is at an INDEPENDENT risk if both partners are carriers. Everyone should be screened before they start or expand their family. Even if you have been screened, it’s important to make sure your disease panel is up-to-date before growing your family since a many diseases have been added to screening panels in the past few years.
  • You CAN still have a healthy baby even if you and your partner are carriers. The great news is there are options to help carrier couples have a healthy baby. For example, through IVF with pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, a carrier couple is able to have their own biological child that is not affected by the disease.
  • You can screen conveniently and affordably from home on saliva with JScreen . This national, non-profit initiative out of Emory University allows people from anywhere in the United States to access low-cost screening from the comfort of their own homes, with genetic counseling provided over the phone once the results are ready. To request a saliva kit, visit and it will be mailed to your home.


About JScreen and the importance within Jewish Dating  is a non-profit community-based public health initiative dedicated to preventing Jewish genetic diseases. Headquartered in Atlanta at Emory University School of Medicine, the JScreen initiative is a collaboration among clinical geneticists, socially minded businesses and nonprofits to provide everyday people with a ready access point to cutting-edge genetic testing technology, patient education and genetic counseling services.  makes testing for Jewish genetic diseases simple — providing an easy-to-use at-home saliva test that gives couples planning for children an unprecedented understanding of their own genetic makeup and risks relating to their children’s health. If a person or couple’s risk is elevated, genetic counselors from Emory University School of Medicine will privately address their results, options and resources to help you have a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby.

We believe the combination of education, access to premier gene screening technologies and personalized, confidential support are the keys to preventing these devastating diseases. Please join us in turning the tide against hereditary diseases and ensuring families have the best chances for healthy babies.

Saw You At Sinai
84-17 midland pkwy QueensNY11432 USA 
 • 646-403-9839

One Comment on “Jewish Dating: Genetic screening”

  1. 1 Rayna said at 11:03 am on May 22nd, 2019:

    JScreen is fantastic! I used them before getting married and have told everyone I know to get screened by them.

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