Hello, nice to meet you: An introduction to popular GECKO products 

Hello my name is GECKO

The GECKO website has many resources for healthcare providers, primary care providers and other non-genetics health professionals.  All products are expert reviewed, up-to-date and evidence-based.  We recognize that most of our users are not likely to have the time to search through all the content on our site, so today’s blog will highlight some GECKO products, in particular those that were developed by the GECKO team, and informed by our needs assessment and literature review.  We are open to topic suggestions and encourage our users to contact us with feedback.

GEC-KO Messengers

GEC-KO Messengers are comprehensive summaries for healthcare providers on genetic disorders, technologies or topics.  All feature a Bottom line written with the awareness that the busy healthcare provider may not have time read through the entire resource when accessing information to answer a specific clinical question, so the really key messages are found here.  Often the Bottom line will include a brief summary of the topic, Red Flags and recommendations, and the benefit of genetic testing/consultation for your patient.

When viewed online, the Messengers are intended to be interactive.  A provider can visit the topic page and expand the section that contains the question s/he is seeking e.g. Who should be offered genetic testing for Lynch syndrome (hereditary colorectal cancer)? What does consanguinity mean for my patient?  What are the surveillance and management guidelines for my patient with hereditary hemochromatosis? What do my patient’s factor V Leiden genetic test results mean? What are the risks to the family members of my patient with multiple sclerosis? A user is also able to download the entire content of the Messenger in PDF format.

GEC-KO Messengers follow the format of Gene Messengers, developed as part of a randomized control trial known as the GenetiKit project and demonstrated to be a very successful knowledge translation format.  Findings from this trial were published and can be found in Carroll JC, Wilson BJ, Allanson J, Grimshaw J, Blaine SM, Meschino WS, Permaul JA, Graham ID. GenetiKit: a randomized controlled trial to enhance delivery of genetics services by family physicians. Fam Pract 2011; 28(6): 615-23.

Later this year we will begin robust formative evaluation of these and other products to ensure they do fulfill their intended purpose.

Published: Consanguinity, factor V Leiden (FVL), Hereditary Hemochromatosis (HH), Lynch syndrome (hereditary colorectal cancer syndrome), Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

In development/ under review: Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity-based screening, Familial Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms and Dissection (FTAAD), Familial Hypercholesterolemia (FH), Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer syndrome (HBOC), Prenatal Chromosomal Microarray

 

GEC-KO on the run

GEC-KO on the run documents are concise summaries for healthcare providers on genetic disorders, technologies or topics.  Like, the Messengers, all feature a Bottom line.  They were developed as a ‘spin-off’ of the successful Gene Messengers for the busy practitionerGenerally these on the runs are  2-3 pages in length and are meant to contain the key clinical information for a healthcare provider, such as:

  • What is the condition/topic/technology?
  • What are the Red Flags to consider genetic testing or genetic consultation?
  • What does the genetic test result mean?
  • How will genetic testing help you and your patient?
  • Are their harms or limitations to genetic testing?
  • Surveillance and management guidelines and resources

 

Published: Alzheimer disease (AD), Chromosomal microarray, Consanguinity, Diabetes type 2, Direct-to-Consumer genetic testing (DTC-GT), factor V Leiden (FVL), Hereditary Hemochromatosis (HH), Huntington disease (HD), Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), Lynch syndrome (hereditary colorectal cancer syndrome), Non-Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT), Multiple Sclerosis, Pharmacogenomics (Codeine and breastfeeding), Schizophrenia

In development/ under review: Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity-based screening, Familial Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms and Dissection (FTAAD), Familial Hypercholesterolemia (FH), Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer syndrome (HBOC), Long QT syndrome (LQTS), Prenatal Chromosomal Microarray

 

Point of Care Tools

In this section we have downloadable tools on a variety of genomic topics ready to use at the point of care.  These resources are intended to help identify and appropriately refer patients who may benefit from genetic services and reassure those at population risk.

The tools are organized by topic and include:

  • Family history
  • Hereditary cancers
    • General Red Flags to identify those with risk of a Hereditary Cancer Syndrome most likely to benefit from a referral to genetics
    • A two part referral triage tool for patients at risk for Lynch syndrome (hereditary colorectal cancer)
      • The first part contains three questions for your patient that will better help you stratify his/her risk for hereditary colorectal cancer and identify those patients that would benefit from a referral for genetics consultation.  The cumulative sensitivity of these three questions in identifying patients with characteristics suggestive of the hereditary colorectal cancer syndrome, Lynch syndrome (LS), and those who should undergo a more extensive risk assessment is 77%. When all 3 questions are answered “yes,” the tool correctly identifies 95% of individuals with germline mutations causing LS. If a patient answers “yes” to all of these questions a referral to genetics should be offered.  If a patient answers “yes” to any of these questions, consider further assessment using the criteria in Part II.
      • The second part contains further personal and family history Red Flags to identify those at high risk of LS most likely to benefit from a referral to genetics.  These red flags are derived from the Amsterdam criteria [with 22% sensitivity and 98% specificity for LS] and the revised Bethesda criteria [with a 82% sensitivity and 77% specificity for LS].
    • Hereditary Renal Cell Cancer triage tool
      • A practical guide to identify those patients most likely to benefit from referral to genetics
    • Hereditary hemochromatosis (HH) triage and surveillance tool
      • Contains Red Flags to identify patients at risk of HH and thus most likely to benefit from genetic testing and/or referral to genetics. It has screening and surveillance recommendations for individuals who have a positive genetic test result
    • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM)
      • The role of genetic testing, evaluation and management of HCM is reviewed
    • Ethnicity-based screening in Canada
      • Summary of the geographic distribution of ethnic populations at risk for hemoglobinopathies and other genetic disorders where a higher carrier frequency is found in individuals of a particular ancestry. Genetic screening recommendations are provided
    • Factor V Leiden (FVL)
      • Recommends when to offer genetic testing for FVL and provides management guidelines for asymptomatic FVL carriers

In development/ under review: Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity-based screening, Familial Thoracic Aortic Aneurysms and Dissection (FTAAD), Familial Hypercholesterolemia (FH), Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer syndrome (HBOC), Long QT syndrome (LQTS), Prenatal Chromosomal Microarray

morrison