IS BALDNESS IN YOUR DNA? NEW GENE TEST: Company says men with one genetic variant have 60 percent chance of going bald by age 40

It used to be that checking out the hairlines of other men in the family was the usual way to predict whether a man might expect to lose his hair one day. Now, there’s a DNA test.

The test, called Hair DX, looks for a genetic variant found in most bald men. Men who test positive for the variant have a 60 percent chance of going bald by age 40, according to the company that offers it, also called Hair DX, which says the test also identifies a less-common variant of the same gene that, if present, means a man has an 85 percent chance of not going bald.

Scientists haven’t identified all of the genes that contribute to male-pattern baldness. But Hair DX says the DNA test is the first to analyze a gene known to be strongly associated with the condition: the androgen receptor.

No independent research has been done on the accuracy of the Hair DX test itself, which has been offered since January, though studies have shown that men who have certain variants of the androgen receptor gene are at higher risk for male-pattern baldness.

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