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MyHeritage Acquires Promethease, SNPedia Owner Rover Road Bio

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Israeli genealogy and consumer genomics firm MyHeritage said on Saturday that is has acquired River Road Bio, the owner and operator of Promethease and SNPedia.

Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

MyHeritage plans to offer Promethease free of charge through the end of this year and to maintain SNPedia as a free resource for academic and non-profit users.

SNPedia, which was launched in 2006, is a community-curated resource that links genetic variants with medical conditions and traits, citing more than 30,000 peer-reviewed publications and covering more than 110,000 genetic variants. SNPedia will continue to operate under a Creative Commons license, making it freely available for academic and non-commercial use. MyHeritage has the exclusive right to utilize SNPedia commercially and plans to integrate it in future versions of its DNA health products.

Promethease is a literature retrieval service that allows consumers to upload their DNA data from services such as 23andMe or Ancestry and compare it to SNPedia to detect relevant scientific findings. The service, which currently costs $12, was launched in 2008. MyHeritage plans to keep Promethease separate from its MyHeritage DNA health products, which do not allow the use of DNA data from other vendors.

"The acquisition of SNPedia and Promethease expands MyHeritage's intellectual property in medical genetics," said Yaniv Erlich, CSO of MyHeritage, in a statement. "Going forward, SNPedia will empower us to broaden the scope of health reports provided by the MyHeritage DNA Health+Ancestry test and propel it to become a global market leader in consumer testing."