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Capturing Diversity

Most of the world's sequenced genomes come from people of European ancestry, but BBC News reports Global Gene Corp. is hoping to capture the genetic diversity of India. The company also plans to expand to other world regions currently underrepresented in genomic databases, it adds.

"We realized that with the power and possibility of genomics and precision medicine, you can change the health outcome for any individual and allow them to have not just a longer but a better quality of life," Sumit Jamuar, the chief executive of Global Gene Corp., tells the BBC. "What was lacking was genomic data to realize that promise, and that's what we've set out to achieve."

In particular, the company plans on collecting anonymized genetic data to share with academic and pharmaceutical industry researchers. In this way, the BBC says it hopes to enable treatments that are tailored to different populations around the world.

BBC News adds that there are other, similar efforts to better capture human genetic diversity underway in Africa, South America, and East Asia. However, it notes that such efforts also have to grapple with data storage and security concerns.