(Arstechnica) There are many reasons to avoid the plethora of direct-to-consumer DNA tests on the market these days. Recent data suggests that many may produce alarming false positives for disease risks, while others that claim to predict things like athletic abilities and wine preferences are simply dubious. Another, perhaps less-common concern is that an at-home genetic analysis may unveil completely unexpected, deeply disturbing information that you just can’t prepare for.
That was the case for Washington state’s Kelli Rowlette (née Fowler), who took a DNA test with the popular site Ancestry.com back in July 2017.
Rowlette was likely expecting to discover new details about her distant ancestors, but she instead learned that her DNA sample matched that of a doctor in Idaho. The Ancestry.com analysis predicted a “parent-child” relationship. Befuddled and in disbelief, Rowlette relayed the findings to her parents, Sally Ashby and Howard Fowler. According to a lawsuit the family filed in the US District Court of Idaho, she told her parents she was disappointed that the results were so unreliable.
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