23andMe taking over Apple with pilot to collect medical information not simply DNA
DNA-testing start-up 23andMe is experimenting with a brand new method to acquire much more well being information from thousands and thousands of its customers than simply their DNA.
The corporate is now asking a subset of shoppers in the event that they’d be prepared to include their lab outcomes, prescription info and medical historical past, after they’ve obtained the outcomes from the genetic check. 23andMe, which has bought about 10 million at-home DNA testing kits, will be capable to entry that information if customers let the corporate join outdoors medical suppliers utilizing a third-party medical information community known as Human API.
CNBC seen the service in motion earlier this week and the corporate confirmed that it is a beta program that will probably be regularly rolled out to all customers, however declined to remark additional on its plans. The service remains to be being piloted, stated an individual acquainted, and the product may change relying on the way it’s obtained.
Such a transfer would deliver the 23andMe squarely into Apple’s territory.
Apple, in recent times, has developed its personal well being data service, which goals to mixture medical info together with lab assessments and prescriptions into the Well being app on the iPhone.
One lacking part from Apple’s program, nevertheless, is genetics information, which could current a possibility for 23andMe to succeed in individuals who care about getting a deeper evaluation of how their genetic info would possibly influence their danger of illness.
23andMe’s pitch to customers is that the service is a straightforward method to entry well being information, particularly if it is scattered throughout a number of programs, get new insights about their well being, and help with analysis. (Click on the picture to enlarge.)
23andMe is trialling a brand new service that goals to mixture customers’ well being information.
Christina Farr, CNBC
For 23andMe, it is a means to enhance its each its analysis efforts and its well being insights.
Presently, the corporate has entry to genetic info through those that take its at-home DNA check, in addition to some well being info that it collects through surveys. Having entry to a wider information set would supply much more alternative for 23andMe to open up new sources of income, specialists say.
Whereas the corporate is greatest identified for its $99 and up DNA check, it makes a lot of its cash by means of analysis collaborations with pharmaceutical corporations. And going ahead, it hopes to supply new drug therapies by leveraging its rising well being database.
“It is a intelligent transfer,” famous Ruby Gadelrab, a former 23andMe vice chairman who now supplies consulting companies to health-tech corporations. “For customers, well being information is fragmented and this can be a step in the direction of serving to them mixture extra of it,” she stated.
Gadelrab additionally famous that it would assist 23andMe present individuals with details about their dangers for advanced, power illnesses like diabetes, the place it’s useful for scientists to entry a data-set that comes with details about particular person well being habits, medicines, household historical past and extra.
The corporate lately misplaced its chief scientific officer Richard Scheller, nevertheless it nonetheless has a crew of scientists engaged on probably promising drug targets.
23andMe is backed by greater than $780 million in enterprise capital, with buyers together with Alphabet enterprise arm GV, Sequoia Capital and the drug maker GlaxoSmithKline. The corporate has attracted some controversy over time for offering well being info on to customers, together with dangers for most cancers and different illness, particularly in circumstances the place it has offered individuals with false reassurance.
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