Genetic Future

Archives for January, 2009

Nearly five months after 23andMe dropped the price of its genome scan service from $1000 to $400, personal genomics competitor Navigenics has made its own foray into the lower-cost genetic testing market. Navigenics has always been the most expensive of the three mainstream genome-scan companies, despite offering essentially the same product as competitors 23andMe and…

Misha Angrist passes on a call from Case Western University for personal genomics customers to participate in a study of the experience of getting your genome scanned. If you’ve paid money to 23andMe, deCODEme or Navigenics, consider getting involved – Misha assures us that the process was relatively painless. By the way, if you happen…

Looking forward to AGBT

I’ll be at the Advances in Genome Biology and Technology meeting next week – this will be my my first experience of this annual conference on Florida’s picturesque Marco Island, but I already have high expectations based on reports from previous years. The programme is packed with cutting-edge genomics, and to be honest after a…

Sneaky genetic testing

New Scientist has an investigation into companies offering surreptitious genetic testing – basically, providing analysis of DNA samples obtained without permission from others. Currently popular uses are searching for evidence of non-paternity or infidelity (by testing underwear for strange DNA), but obviously the potential exists to also look for markers of potential disease risk, a…

Keith Robison from Omics! Omics! has a fun nostalgia piece looking back on his days in the midst of the genomics bubble of the late 90s. Subscribe to Genetic Future.

Welcome to the 42nd edition of Gene Genie, the blog carnival of clinical genetics and personalised medicine. Most of the entries in this edition fall under the broad umbrella of personalised genetics, with posts emphasising both the pros and cons of the emerging consumer genetic testing industry. The promise and perils of personalised genetics Hsien-Hsien…

Well, it’s a little late, but I finally have a list of what I see as some of the major trends that will play out in the human genomics field in 2009 – both in terms of research outcomes, and shifts in the rapidly-evolving consumer genomics industry. For genetics-savvy readers a lot of these predictions…

A new paper in Bioinformatics describes an efficient compression algorithm that allows an individual’s complete genome sequence to be compressed down to a vanishingly small amount of data – just 4 megabytes (MB). The paper takes a similar approach to the process I described in a post back in June last year (sheesh, if only…

The genetic history of Iceland

Razib has an excellent discussion of a brand new paper in PLoS Genetics, which uses DNA samples from medieval Icelandic skeletons to explore the genetic history of the Icelandic population. This population is of course of great interest to human geneticists: the Icelandic company deCODE (the home of over half the authors on this paper)…

Still quite a way, based on this survey of second-generation sequencing users (subscription only, I think) conducted by the industry publication In Sequence. Along with a range of other questions, the survey asked users about the cost to generate one billion base pairs (one gigabase, or Gb) on their platform at the end of 2008,…