The Australian Reproductive Genetic Carrier Screening Project (Mackenzie’s Mission): Design and Implementation

The Mackenzie’s Mission Study Team, Alison D. Archibald, Belinda J. McClaren, Jade Caruana, Erin Tutty, Emily A. King, Jane L. Halliday, Stephanie Best, Anaita Kanga-Parabia, Bruce H. Bennetts, Corrina C. Cliffe, Evanthia O. Madelli, Gladys Ho, Jan Liebelt, Janet C. Long, Jeffrey Braithwaite, Jillian Kennedy, John Massie, Jon D. Emery, Julie McGaughranJustine E. Marum, Kirsten Boggs, Kristine Barlow-Stewart, Leslie Burnett, Lisa Dive, Lucinda Freeman, Mark R. Davis, Martin J. Downes, Mathew Wallis, Monica M. Ferrie, Nicholas Pachter, Paul A. Scuffham, Rachael Casella, Richard J.N. Allcock, Royston Ong, Samantha Edwards, Sarah Righetti, Sebastian Lunke, Sharon Lewis, Susan P. Walker, Tiffany F. Boughtwood, Tristan Hardy, Ainsley J. Newson, Edwin P. Kirk, Nigel G. Laing, Martin B. Delatycki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Reproductive genetic carrier screening (RGCS) provides people with information about their chance of having children with autosomal recessive or X-linked genetic conditions, enabling informed reproductive decision-making. RGCS is recommended to be offered to all couples during preconception or in early pregnancy. However, cost and a lack of awareness may prevent access. To address this, the Australian Government funded Mackenzie’s Mission—the Australian Reproductive Genetic Carrier Screening Project. Mackenzie’s Mission aims to assess the acceptability and feasibility of an easily accessible RGCS program, provided free of charge to the participant. In study Phase 1, implementation needs were mapped, and key study elements were developed. In Phase 2, RGCS is being offered by healthcare providers educated by the study team. Reproductive couples who provide consent are screened for over 1200 genes associated with >750 serious, childhood-onset genetic conditions. Those with an increased chance result are provided comprehensive genetic counseling support. Reproductive couples, recruiting healthcare providers, and study team members are also invited to complete surveys and/or interviews. In Phase 3, a mixed-methods analysis will be undertaken to assess the program outcomes, psychosocial implications and implementation considerations alongside an ongoing bioethical analysis and a health economic evaluation. Findings will inform the implementation of an ethically robust RGCS program.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1781
JournalJournal of Personalized Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022


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