With its new Research Revolution, 23andMe says it will "jumpstart genetic research" into certain diseases by engaging the community. According to the Spittoon, this project will help "large groups of people to assemble themselves into large-scale genetic studies." People vote for the disease they are interested in and once 1,000 people are signed up, the study commences — participants receive the scaled-down Research Edition of the 23andMe service for $99. The 10 diseases under study are: ALS, celiac disease, epilepsy, lymphoma and leukemia, migraines, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, severe food allergies, and testicular cancer. Genetic Future's Daniel MacArthur weighs in. "Let me be perfectly frank - it's unlikely that a genome-wide association study with only 1,000 patients will reveal any novel genetic associations, especially for those diseases on the list," he writes. He later adds that "23andMe's goals are clearly far beyond this: they aim to build stable, self-sustaining communities of potential research participants, that add new members over time and are available to add further trait data."
Viva la Revolución de … 23andMe
Jul 08, 2009