Microarray technology has become an essential tool in Pediatric and Prenatal practice. Here is quick guide for helping you choose the right microarray solution:
1. Need: Are you looking for micro deletions?
Although microarray will surely pick up aneuploidies (missing or extra chromosome), you can also find them through simple/cheaper options such as Karyotype/FISH. If you are looking for balanced re-arrangements, you necessarily need a Karyotype. If you suspect micro-deletions, you got to go for a microarray. For point mutations, you will need sequencing based assays.
2. Resolution: Would you prefer a higher resolution?
Microarrays come in a variety of resolutions/configurations. For relatively larger deletion/duplication, a lower resolution array can provide an answer. If you looking for smaller/rarer micro-deletion OR you want a greater coverage, you can look for higher resolution array.
3. Cost: How much can your patient afford?
If cost is not a big consideration, then a higher resolution is always preferred. However, if the patient has a limited budget, a lower resolution array will also help rule out several common micro-deletion/duplication and provider a wider coverage than traditional techniques such as Karyotype or FISH.
4. Index Case: You don’t have an index case?
Are you dealing with a de-novo situation or one where the previous history or index case is not available? Don’t worry, unlike many sequencing assays, microarrays can be done without an index case.
5. Clarity: Are you looking for simple actionable insight?
Indeed, that is what you need from any diagnostic test. Then you need your microarray data to be analyzed and reported from an experienced and certified geneticist. This is known as clinical interpretation and this is critical for making sense of the array data. Microarray data cannot be analyzed or reported automatically by the machine as many people believe.
A careful choice of the right microarray solution and provider is a critical for moving ahead in the diagnostic odyssey.
To find out about various microarray options, click hear.