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Is this a scam? Has anyone used it?

I'm really curious about this DNA testing stuff.

by Anonymousreply 5802/14/2013

"You may learn information about yourself that you do not anticipate. This information may evoke strong emotions and has the potential to alter your life and worldview. You may discover things about yourself that trouble you and that you may not have the ability to control or change (e.g., your father is not genetically your father, surprising facts related to your ancestry, or that someone with your genotype may have a higher than average chance of developing a specific condition or disease). These outcomes could have social, legal, or economic implications."

That kind of freaked me out.

by Anonymousreply 104/11/2011

I used it to test for some genetic conditions and also received some very general information about my mother's ethnic history. She's french canadian, and the entire mitochondrial history was french french french. Which I already knew, but it gave me confidence in the results. I found out that I am at risk for stroke and ALS.

by Anonymousreply 304/11/2011

Hmm. They are offering it today for free, but you have to pay shipping of kit and $9 a month fee for updates for a year. Just wondering if it's worth it.

Thanks R3

by Anonymousreply 404/11/2011

Is privacy a concern? This sounds like information that the large health insurers would find some way to hack into so they could deny all kinds of benefits to individuals at risk for certain diseases.

I'm very interested to learn this info and I did read up on the site and the privacy procedures. But still, it is so early in the discovery process. There is all kinds of law and public policy that has yet to be written on the topic. I'm not sure if I want my data floating out there yet.

by Anonymousreply 504/11/2011

I'm a customer, so are 3 of my immediate family members, a second cousin and a best friend. We are uniformly satisfied.%0D %0D I'm a genealogist and found the "family finder" and "family inheritance" output fascinating. Family Finder will compare your dna to that of every other person in 23andme's database and tell you who you're related to, with an estimate as to degree of cousinhood. It's mindblowing to the genealogist. Learning our maternal and paternal haplotypes was interesting, too.%0D %0D The health stuff is also interesting, though of secondary importance to us. %0D %0D Some of it was useful. We learned that an elderly family member, who has had strokes and is a candidate for warfarin, is genetically predisposed to be very sensitive to this drug and may require a much smaller dose of it than most people. Though she's not yet on warfarin, her MD found the information useful and has noted this on her chart for future reference.%0D %0D There's a lot of "carrier status" information, and if, unlike me, you're interested in breeding, you really should know if you're a carrier for, say, Cystic Fibrosis, before you have children.%0D %0D We've had a great experience with the company and recommend it highly. They have privacy protections that are so stringent as to be frustrating to a genetic genealogist: you have to jump through hoops just to be able to have written contact with a relative finder match.%0D %0D I've bought two additional kits today myself. I highly recommend 23andme.%0D %0D

by Anonymousreply 604/11/2011

It's legitimate. I read about it in Haaretz a few months ago.%0D %0D I thought about doing it for the ancestrial component. I thought it might be interesting. I would not do it for disease testing. There are just too many factors which decide whether or not you get a disease for it to be worthwhile to me. %0D %0D If there were a history of clearly genetic diseases in my family and I were planning to have children, I'd go for genetic testing/counseling, not something through the mail. But there isn't and I'm not going to spawn.

by Anonymousreply 704/11/2011

[quote]I'm not sure if I want my data floating out there yet.%0D %0D You're data won't be "floating out there" unless you post it online yourself (and some people want to and do). %0D %0D I'm pretty suer it may be used for 23andme in-house research (and they are actively pursuing research on Parkinson's disease and other conditions), but you have to sign a release to have it cited in a scholarly study, and even then it will be stripped of all identifying information and used only in aggregated form along with others' genetic information.%0D %0D And you don't have to sign the release to get your results. You do get a nifty "research pioneer" badge on your profile, though, if you do.%0D %0D DNA privacy is an illusion anyway. If someone really wants your dna, they'll get it. A lock of hair, a leftover bite of pizza, a blood sample, all contain enough of your dna to profile you.

by Anonymousreply 804/11/2011

[quote]Hmm. They are offering it today for free, but you have to pay shipping of kit and $9 a month fee for updates for a year. Just wondering if it's worth it.

Sound like a typical garden-variety membership scam. The info you get may be valid and accurate, but it's up to you to determine if it's worth the $100.

by Anonymousreply 904/11/2011

It looks like this originally was marketed as having a set price (three hundred or so) but now it has the test as being free but you are only paying for a monthly subscription. Is that to keep you around as new "relatives" are discovered or what? Also, what if you just want it for the medical implications. Why would you subscribe then?

by Anonymousreply 1004/11/2011

The subscription fee is: %0D %0D 1. For ongoing relative finder matches. About once a week, you'll find new people showing up on your Relative Finder as new people are added to the database.%0D %0D 2. For ongoing medical updates. Once a month, you'll get an email about any new conditions they're testing for and the risks pertaining to you.%0D %0D I should add that if you're only interested in the genealogy component, there's an account setting that allows you to NOT be shown your health results.

by Anonymousreply 1104/11/2011

I have taken part in the National Geographic, Genographic Project; which will track your x or y chromosome back as far as they can on the human family tree.

I do not know my bio-Dad and did this to find out that I am most likely of Jewish descent on both sides.

It is not has exacting at the other genetic testing mentioned in this post, however N.G. Study does say that the more people participate, the more exacting they can be. Perhaps even being able to say which village your family was from, prior to migrating to the U.S.

by Anonymousreply 1204/11/2011

I'm an only child, both parents have died as have their siblings. Can they still trace DNA? I'd like to know if dementia is in my future.

by Anonymousreply 1304/11/2011

What does it cost?

by Anonymousreply 1404/11/2011

If I can get hold of some of my father's spit could I use this to find out if he is really my father?

My father went to sea, and my mother has always been a bit of a minx. Well, you get the picture...

by Anonymousreply 1504/11/2011

My mom is adopted so I'd be interested to see what would be reported. However, I'm suspicious of things that require a subscription.

by Anonymousreply 1604/11/2011

It works much better than Mighty Putty.

by Anonymousreply 1704/11/2011

$199 [R14]

by Anonymousreply 1804/11/2011

r13, I'm not sure whether they identify Alzheimer's risk yet. I believe the current version of the test checks for APOE4, which is strongly associated with risk for Alzheimer's, but they may not be reporting these results yet. You may want to dig around on the site to find out.%0D %0D Anyway, much of what you learn medically is your "relative risk", that is, whether your risk for a disease is higher or lower than other people's, not whether it's set in stone that you'll get it, and I believe being positive for APOE4 increases relative, not absolute, risk for dementia.%0D %0D r15, yes. In my family, the test correctly identified my relationship to 4 family members, from parent to 2nd cousin. We gave out no relatedness information, several of us have different surnames and the kits were bought at different times and by different people. I was impressed.%0D %0D r14, the cheapest option is to choose the "gift" kit for yourself. That's $108 plus shipping up front, for 1 year of service.

by Anonymousreply 1904/11/2011

I love you Datalounge! I've wanted to do this for a couple of years. Just signed up

by Anonymousreply 2004/11/2011

Actually it's free (for today), the subscription is $9 a month and it's $14.95 for shipping of the kit to you and back to them.

Adds up to $122.95

R18, am I missing something?

by Anonymousreply 2104/11/2011

That's what I want to know, R21. I think even for $199 it would be interesting to do.

by Anonymousreply 2204/11/2011

This is the small print: By checking this box, you agree to the following terms: Your subscription to the Personal Genome Service will renew automatically every month unless you notify us of your decision to terminate it. A 12 month subscription for $9/month per kit is required and begins when your initial DNA analysis is completed. You may cancel your subscription anytime after your commitment term. You must cancel your subscription before it renews to avoid billing of subscription fees for the renewal term to your credit card.

by Anonymousreply 2304/11/2011

Do you have to give your real name and details about yourself, or can it be anonymous insofar as using a fake profile?

by Anonymousreply 2404/11/2011

I believe you can enter a fake name after you receive your kit and register it online.%0D %0D But you can also give your real name and keep it from being displayed with an account setting. You have a lot of control over how much information you give out to the 23andme user community.

by Anonymousreply 2504/11/2011

r24, I just checked my account to verify, and yes, you can choose to have your real name displayed only to the people you're "sharing" with. %0D %0D "Sharing" is 23andme parlance for two people who've mutually agreed to make certain parts of their results visible to each other. Genealogists often "share" with their Relative Finder matches.%0D %0D If you choose that account setting, you won't be "searchable"; you'll essentially be invisible to the majority of 23andme'ers.

by Anonymousreply 2604/11/2011

I signed up. I've been wanting to do this for a while, and I can't complain about spending $125 over the course of a year for the info. I'll let you know how it goes.

by Anonymousreply 2704/11/2011

No, it's not a scam.%0D %0D They've been thoroughly covered in several places, including "Discover" magazine.%0D

by Anonymousreply 2804/11/2011

I just got it. They only charge you the 14.99 for shipping, then take out $9 each month. I thought they billed it all at once, but they don't.

by Anonymousreply 2904/11/2011

I am filling out a question/answer list now. They say to do so before receiving the kit. One of teh questions is:

"When you lift your arms over your head, can you touch your elbows together behind your head?"

WTF does that even mean? And NO, I can't do that. Guess it means I don't come from a line of circus performers..

by Anonymousreply 3004/11/2011

Wish I would have seen this before I signed up.

by Anonymousreply 3104/12/2011

[italic]I do not know my bio-Dad and did this to find out that I am most likely of Jewish descent on both sides.[/italic]

There's no Jewish gene, so you're fresh out of luck there.

by Anonymousreply 3204/12/2011

lol @r30!!

by Anonymousreply 3304/12/2011

r31, article is over a year old. They've had a cash infusion since then are said to be in good shape now.%0D %0D r32, Ashkenazi Jews have a history of endogamy and because of this tend to have many more Relative Finder matches than people of other, less endogamous ancestries. Someone with even a little AJ ancestry will draw hundreds of AJ matches on their Relative Finder. There's also an "Ancestry Finder" feature that color codes those Ashekenazi segments, so yes, the test is pretty good at picking up Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry.

by Anonymousreply 3404/12/2011

There seems to be a "plant" on this thread promoting the hell out of 23andme. I would appreciate knowing for sure if this is the case, but certainly we won't ever really know the truth will we?

by Anonymousreply 3504/12/2011

r34, the number of Ashekenazi Jews is very slim.

On another note: why are people afraid of giving out their real names? Are they afraid that their DNA sample will be used elsewhere, linking it back to them?

by Anonymousreply 3604/12/2011

Happy customer, r35.

by Anonymousreply 3704/12/2011

The founder is married to Google founder, Sergei Brin. There are very smart and idealistic people behind the company in my opinion.

I bought the test for my husbot several years ago when it cost $1000.

This year I gave the test as Christmas presents. I've done the spitting myself, but haven't mailed it in.

It's definitely not a scam.

by Anonymousreply 3804/12/2011

But then again, it's connected with Google and funded by Google venture capital.

So make sure you're comfortable with the implications.

by Anonymousreply 3904/12/2011

You have to have a strong heart if you want to know you're future.

by Anonymousreply 4004/12/2011

R38, I was about to ask if this was the service offered by Brin's wife because I recall hearing about it last year. Are we sure they're not going to take the results and sell it to Google advertisers who will then try and sell us products depending on our predispositions?

by Anonymousreply 4104/12/2011

My thoughts exactly, r41. I think Brin's wife is now out though. The Wired article linked upthread indicates that the company repaid some loans to her and she has moved on.

I fear more that some giant like UnitedHealth would hire Russian goons to hack into the system and use the information to deny future health claims and long term care insurance applications.

The funny thing is that I'm not a paranoid person. I've never thought twice about using credit cards online, doing online banking, etc. But for some reason it just seems obvious that this DNA could get into the wrong hands and make people's life difficult.

by Anonymousreply 4204/12/2011

It said I was a Chinese lesbian. I was ripped off.

by Anonymousreply 4307/05/2012

I'm with r42.

It sounds great but you can bet that at some point in the very near future, this info will be used to deny health insurance claims or insurance, period.

Sure, The Man can always come and dig thru your trash for your DNA. But you're actually SENDING it to them. And that's part of the TOS - it could be used against you in the future.

by Anonymousreply 4407/29/2012

[quote] I fear more that some giant like UnitedHealth would hire Russian goons to hack into the system and use the information to deny future health claims and long term care insurance applications.

Why would they bother with that? They'd just buy the company and all of the records become their property. Which they can then charge OTHER health insurance companies a huge amount of money to access.

by Anonymousreply 4507/29/2012

Well if you know your family history you pretty much know your health risks.

For example, ALS runs in my father side.

Plus being of Italian/Mediterranean ancestry predisposes me to carry the thalisemia gene.

by Anonymousreply 4607/29/2012

[quote]at some point in the very near future, this info will be used to deny health insurance claims or insurance, period.

Exactly why Obama pushed health reform thru, so this type of thing will be illegal for us just as it always has been for members of congress and all other federal workers.

by Anonymousreply 4707/30/2012

23andMe reported that I, a White woman of European descent, had... 0% European. The health report seems randomly generated. The traits report gives bizarre results. There are many haplogroups. Yet, they assign you to one, after only taking samples from four population groups. When I asked on the forums what happened, a bunch of bullies seemed to try to drive me to suicide. I want my money back.

by Anonymousreply 4810/12/2012

I met a physician and he said many MDs are happy with some of the technological breakthroughs, but lately mixing technology and medicine has caused more problems than it has solved.

Besides the patients who arrive already knowing what prescriptions they want (thanks to the new mix of entertainment and medicine) there are the others who show up with print out from full body CTs and MRIs demanding to know how much time they have to live and how he is going to fix that.

by Anonymousreply 4910/13/2012

Why, Love Guide Me Home @ r48, you relentless troll, how funny meeting you here.

by Anonymousreply 5010/13/2012

I found my ancestry results were pretty accurate insofar as where they came from. My mom's side were from Russia (descending down from around Scandinavia, which explains the white-blond in my family), and my dad's side were from around the Carpathians. A lot of the genetic/health traits were accurate as well. What people have to realize, though, is they're using your DNA information NOT to tell you specifically about YOU, but to tell you about groups of people with similar DNA. Or, rather, to generalize your DNA. As for the family connections, I received a few messages from people who were about 3rd-5th cousin relationship, but we weren't able to make any sort of family connections. My dad's family is quite small, and no one knows anything at all about his father - where he came from exactly, whether he had brothers or sisters, who his parents were - no one asked any questions. I mainly tried the site to see where 'relatives' would show up around the world given the mystery surrounding my grandfather. All the ones who contacted me definitely had similar ethnic backgrounds, but nothing came of it. I got in on the free kit/monthly subscription deal, which I thought was worth it. I just cancelled, though. I'm not sure I was going to get much more out of it.

by Anonymousreply 5110/13/2012

R48 - they 'seemed' to drive you to suicide? Are you posting from beyond?

by Anonymousreply 5210/13/2012

The results are a joke - really - they give you amazingly stupid group descriptions that they just pulled out of their butts. They don't tell you anything and they won't give you your results. It's almost a scam.

by Anonymousreply 5310/13/2012

Eldergay here already suffering from genetic health problems. I never saw 'em coming. I don't really want to know what else I have to look forward to.

by Anonymousreply 5410/13/2012

23 and me is the marketing end of the sales pitch, they have, according to a phone call 10 minutes ago from 650-963-8909, no direct connection to the processing lab. It's all automated. Further, you pay for the service, the results are given to 23 and me for their data base and you get an automated copy only if you publish your e-mail account information to the world. Also, you must pay 23 and me again, if you want any of the downstream information contained in their data base. And although it is proprietary medical information, 23 and me reserves the right to take and use your proprietary medical information as they see fit. They should, if they were a professional org. make sure you can open an account with them on line before they sell the kits, but they don't worry about that. So there is no way to return the unable to be submitted kits to them, or receive a complete refund, since 23 and me has nothing to do with the actual processing end of the deal. They just collect money from you, info about you, and you pay for it.

by Anonymousreply 5502/14/2013

They should be free. Google is paying for it. It's Sergey Brin's wife that has this place.

by Anonymousreply 5602/14/2013

Is r6 a testimonial from a magazine or a real poster? Also r48 what exactly happened to you in the forums? My brother died of cystic fibrosis and I am sure my parents would have liked to know they were carriers 41 years ago but they didn't. My sister and I have been tested and we are not carriers so it seems nowadays you can test for things like that without having to sign up for this.

by Anonymousreply 5702/14/2013

[quote]you get an automated copy only if you publish your e-mail account information to the world.

WTH are you talking about? No one's email is "published to the world" on the 23andme site. The site does collect your email address, exactly like many other online services, but nowhere is it accessible to other users of the service.

No, they don't process their samples on site, but so what? Just as your doctor subcontracts genetic analysis to an outside lab, 23andme subcontracts genotyping to LabCorp. It's more cost-efficient than building their own CLIA-certified lab. The data processing is all proprietary once the SNP's are read.

Furthermore, the total price has just been dropped to $99. An amazing bargain, IMO.

by Anonymousreply 5802/14/2013
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