Proove Bioscience, in Irvine, California, has developed a cheek-swab DNA test that, coupled with a questionnaire, identifies a person’s risk of becoming addicted, reports CBS Los Angeles.
The California-based biotech company says that it’s DNA test can take on the nation’s opioid epidemic by identify patients who are genetically predisposed to becoming addicted to painkillers.
According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, nearly 2 million people were addicted to pain medication in 2014, and close to 19,000 died from painkiller overdoses,
That year, more people died from drug overdoses than ever before, and six out of ten of those deaths involved opioids, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In many areas, the opioid drug crisis continues to grow.
Opioid addiction commonly begins in the doctor’s office, when physicians write prescriptions for patients, recent reports suggest. Patients predisposed to addiction do not know they’re more at risk until it’s too late.