We couldn't make this stuff up if we tried. The New York Times reports that Knome will use eBay to auction off an opportunity to get your genome sequenced. The auction, scheduled to begin tomorrow, is supposed to open at $68,000 -- a significant drop from the sequencing service's list price of $99,000. NYT, which characterizes the auction as "a publicity stunt," notes that "at present the information has little value — even for a low-ball bid of $68,000." Knome is sweetening the pot by including a private dinner with George Church, and proceeds will go to the X Prize Foundation.
Daniel MacArthur at Genetic Future is already blogging about this, saying that "even the opening bid of $68,000 is way too high" -- in part because the current cost trends in sequencing means that waiting a couple of months "will likely save you tens of thousands of dollars."
Still, a one-on-one dinner with George? That might be worth the asking price on its own.