Will Mworia's Blog


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Personal Genetics Service 23andMe


Ever wondered what you’re great great great grandma had allergies to and whether that has a part to play with your current allergy to dogs, or cats… or some kind of flower??? This is a case of what probably genetic sciences can have clues to. Imagine being able to tell whether you have chances of getting some genetic disease before you get it? Sounds like a good thing, eh! I mean think of the kind of health problems that could be stopped before they happened. I once saw this Outer Limits episode where they could tell a babies life expectancy before they were born and parents could choose to keep their babies if they were going to be just, well, close to perfect! Take the same scenario in a case where some covert military project breeds a super perfect force, or a Hitler who can now take advantage of the same technology to build his ‘Pure Race’ by breeding the ‘right’ persons.

Anyway, all these are just speculations and probably just really good science fiction novels and movies and series. But then did you ever see a Surface-like gadget on an old star trek movie?

OK, I think I have scared you enough. On to reality! There’s a new service that’s soon to be launched, more precisely a personal genetics service. Yes, that’s right, a personal genetic service. It’s called 23andme (23 for the 23 chromosomes that are part of your DNA) and its founded by Sergey Brin’s (Yes, that! Sergey Brin) wife.

23 chromosomes

23andme to launch Monday by ZDNet‘s Garett Rogers — Anne Wojcicki, the wife of Google co-founder Sergey Brin, is to launch 23andme Monday — it appears they are already taking orders now though. The service, partially funded by Google, has set out to revolutionize how we look at ourselves in reference to the past, present and future. For $999 you will receive [...]

From the 23andme website:

23andMe’s mission is to be the world’s trusted source of personal genetic information.

23andMe, Inc. is a privately-held company dedicated to helping individuals understand their own genetic information using recent advances in DNA analysis technologies and web-based interactive tools. 23andMe enables individuals to gain deeper insights into personal ancestry, genealogy and inherited traits. 23andMe was founded in April 2006 by Linda Avey and Anne Wojcicki.

So now you have all your personal information online including your health records and business documents… hey, why not throw in your DNA there!

Anyone ever watch that Outer Limits episode ‘Stream of Consciouisness’?

It’s great innovation though. I wish 23andme the all the best but I also hope that they are worth trusting with the kind of information they would be handling and the potential ramifications it could have if someone somewhere breached the very thin chain of trust that holds the web together.

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