Source, Philadelphia Business Journal, John George
NBA All-Star Kevin Love is working with a Montgomery County personalized medicine company to raise awareness about mental health.
Love, the Cleveland Cavaliers star who went public about his struggles with depression and anxiety more than three years ago, will help Genomind of King of Prussia promote its latest product.
The product, called the Mental Health Map, is a direct-to-consumer genetic test designed to give people a better understanding of the biological basis of their mental health. The test focuses on genetics, traits and predispositions associated with mental health and wellness. Specifically, it provides a person’s genetic predispositions connected with the seven core genetic mental health capabilities: anxiety and stress, focus and memory, mood, sleep, social behavior, eating behavior and habits, and substance use.
The test analyzes 38 genetic variants and their influence on 29 mental health traits. The product is coupled with “actionable guidance” to help people improve health and wellness.
Love said he has been “very public” about his anxiety and depression to help others come to terms with their own mental health issues and get the help they need.
“I’ve said it before and it’s even more true after the year we’ve had,” Love said. “Everyone is going through something that we can’t see. The first step is being open to help.”
Love said he used the Mental Health Map himself and reviewed the results with a Genomind advisor. “The first thing I noticed was the accuracy, based on knowing myself,” he said. “It painted a thorough picture that made sense. And it’s given me satisfaction knowing that I’ve been doing the right things for myself these past few years, but also provided an action plan to work on areas that need more attention.”
Shawn O’Brien, CEO of Genomind, said the company’s focus is to “get more help to more people,” whether they are beginning their mental health journey or are already in treatment.
“Many people don’t know this, but I came to Genomind as a concerned dad of a suicidal son,” O’Brien said. “After witnessing how the Professional PGx Express Test literally helped save his life, I ultimately agreed to lead Genomind so I could help more people on this critical journey.”
Professional PGx Express is the company’s genetic test that evaluates variants of 24 genes to help mental health providers select effective and well-tolerated medications, at the right doses, for patients with mental health issues based on their genetic profile. The product was developed to reduce the costly and ineffective trial-and-error approach often used with medications for mental health.
O’Brien said he welcomes Love’s assistance in getting people to talk about mental health and erasing the stigma of mental health issues, while educating people about the role genes play. “We can make a huge difference together,” he said.
The Genomind Mental Health Map retails for $599 and is available at www.mentalhealthmap.com or on Amazon. The data collected is kept private.