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Layoffs at 23andMe

23andMe has laid off about 100 employees from its consumer business, as GenomeWeb reports. It says that this represents about 14 percent of the overall 23andMe workforce.

CNBC traces this move to a decline in sales, and CEO Anne Wojcicki tells it that she was surprised by the turn in the market but notes privacy concerns could be a factor as could fears of a wider economic downturn. "This has been slow and painful for us," Wojcicki tells CNBC.

The Verge reports that other genetic testing companies have also noted a shrinking market. Illumina reported last year, it says, that there had been a decline in the direct-to-consumer genetic testing space and that Veritas Genomics recently paused its US operations and laid off staff. GenomeWeb also notes that Helix had layoffs and shifted its focus to population genomics partnerships.

Privacy has also been an increasing concern for the field, as people have become worried about how their data could be used, CNBC adds. 

The Scan

Less Than Half

An effort to reproduce key findings from high-profile preclinical cancer studies finds less than half could be replicated, according to the Scientist.

Still Some SARS-CoV-2 Sequencing Holes

The Wall Street Journal reports that viral genomic surveillance has improved in the US, though says there are still gaps.

Avoiding Passing Them On

People with known disease-linked genetic variants are turning to in vitro fertilization so as to not pass those variants to their children, the Washington Post says.

PNAS Papers on Long Cell-Free DNA in Maternal Plasma, Genetic Propensity for Voting

In PNAS this week: long, cell-free DNA of maternal and fetal origins identified in maternal plasma, and more.