Mountain View, Calif. – June 18, 2015 – 23andMe, Inc., the leading personal genetics company, today announced it has genotyped more than one million people worldwide. By accessing their own DNA to learn more about themselves, 23andMe customers have helped push genetic testing into the mainstream, and helped power a new genetic research model.
“Putting the customer at the core of everything we do has enabled us to reach this milestone,” said 23andMe president Andy Page, 23andMe customer number 352. “The power of one million engaged customers has tremendous possibilities for what we can learn about the human genome.”
23andMe genotyped its first customer in November of 2007, and launched its consumer-powered research program in January of 2008. More than 80 percent of 23andMe customers have chosen to participate in genetic research.*
By inviting customers to participate in research, and leveraging online tools and social media, 23andMe has been able to create a new research model — one that accelerates genetic discovery, and offers the potential to more quickly garner new insights into treatments for disease. With data contributed by its active online community, 23andMe has discovered hundreds of new genetic associations. The company has also launched research initiatives focused on specific conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, inflammatory bowel disease and lupus. 23andMe’s Parkinson’s research community is now the largest of its kind, and has helped identify 26 new genetic variants associated with the disease.
This new model for research has evolved as the database has grown, but remains focused on the core mission of helping people access, understand, and benefit from the human genome. In June of 2010 the company published its first peer-reviewed study, replicating previously discovered genetic associations for hair color, eye color, and freckling, in order to validate its Web-based, self-reporting research model. 23andMe has since led or contributed to more than 30 studies, uncovering new genetic associations for a variety of conditions, ranging from motion sickness to skin disease. Earlier this year 23andMe launched its own therapeutics initiative aimed at identifying new therapies for both common and rare diseases, and to accelerate the discovery of new treatments through human genetics.
“23andMe’s one million customers are pioneers in the age of personal genetics,” said 23andMe CEO and co-founder Anne Wojcicki, 23andMe customer number 60. “Our customers have changed the way we view ownership of personal health information, and enabled us to create a new, faster way of conducting genetic research.”
Today, 23andMe has the world’s largest database of re-contactable individuals who have consented to participate in research, and is currently driving studies for new disease treatments in collaboration with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, and academic institutions. For more information on 23andMe research please visit: https://www.23andme.com/research.
23andMe customers are encouraged to share their unique stories HERE.
*23andMe customers provide informed consent to take part in research under a protocol approved by the AAHRPP-accredited institutional review board, Ethical and Independent Review Services.