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A Bit of a Debacle

DecodeMe recently announced that 23andMe customers could migrate their data to the Decode analysis platform for free. However, Peter Aldhous at the New Scientist's Short Sharp Science blog says the platform has given "mangled" analyses. From his 23andMe data, the DecodeMe analysis told Aldhous had a 40 percent risk of developing Alzheimer's disease during his life. However, his own Decode data puts his risk at about 14 percent. When Aldous inquired, Decode told him that "the simple answer to your question is that 23andMe apparently modified their data format. When we prepared the upload, as a reference we used data sets that clearly didn't reflect changes in their format."

Daniel MacArthur adds that this is "a timely warning to everyone — both customers and companies — starting to move through the personal genomics space. The next few years will see a proliferation of data formats and interpretation services, and there will inevitably be errors made due to clashes like this one."

The Scan

Genome Sequences Reveal Range Mutations in Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells

Researchers in Nature Genetics detect somatic mutation variation across iPSCs generated from blood or skin fibroblast cell sources, along with selection for BCOR gene mutations.

Researchers Reprogram Plant Roots With Synthetic Genetic Circuit Strategy

Root gene expression was altered with the help of genetic circuits built around a series of synthetic transcriptional regulators in the Nicotiana benthamiana plant in a Science paper.

Infectious Disease Tracking Study Compares Genome Sequencing Approaches

Researchers in BMC Genomics see advantages for capture-based Illumina sequencing and amplicon-based sequencing on the Nanopore instrument, depending on the situation or samples available.

LINE-1 Linked to Premature Aging Conditions

Researchers report in Science Translational Medicine that the accumulation of LINE-1 RNA contributes to premature aging conditions and that symptoms can be improved by targeting them.