My personalized genetics: 2 ml saliva FedExed to 23andMe!

As the second operation of building my genetically well informed future yesterday (2 days after completing the order) I collected 2 ml of my saliva with the help of 23andMe’s Oragene DNA self-collection kit manufactured by DNA Genotek. First operation has been the sequencing of the D-loop of my mitochondrial DNA out of 5 ml of saliva in the lab at Tulane as a last control experiment, more on that later.

I’d be curious to know approximately how many people in Hungary or in Central Europe, or in all Europe have already used personalized genetics services like 23andMe or the Iceland based deCODE genetics’ genotyping services. As the whole industry is less than 1 year old (starting November 2007) there are not too many public stats available or at least I haven’t found any. With the recent (8th Sep) announcement of the modest $399 kit price reduced from $999 the pioneering personalized genetics service is now affordable for a lot more people, like me (compare it to the $600 iPhone early adopter fee, which I was unable not to buy). 23andMe also seems unbeatable in the aggressive marketing strategy/campaign they are running in the various circles of society (say the fashion world).

Using the Oragene DNA stabilization buffer the big the collected saliva sample is stable at room temperature for over 6 months so there is no problem due to the transit delays.

So if all goes well, 6-8 weeks from now I’ll have a couple hundred thousands insight into the SNPs of a couple thousands of my buccal epithelial cells and leukocytes. So in this spit tube above there lies the early & tiniest portion of my genetically conscious personal future. (Of course my 1.5th thought was to involve my family but it won’t be so easy as it turned out).

80 thoughts on “My personalized genetics: 2 ml saliva FedExed to 23andMe!

  1. I was worried about the privacy of 23andme’s service when I read their privacy statement a couple of months ago, but I guess either they changed it and made it better, or my perspective has changed when the price became $399 :))) (though I am a little broke right now, I’ll definitely try to do it this year).

    Thanks for sharing your experience!

  2. Attila,

    I think maybe we had our processes inverted: making MSC from spit used for 23andMe. So, now what I am doing is to isolate MSC from wisdom teeth (I have found a Dentist who is going to extract the teeth)and then also provide personal genotyping as a part of the stem cell banking process.

    I think it should work, but I was trying to read through the deCODE’s brochures and there is so much genetics jargon in their marketing material I have no idea what the result of any of the tests would tell me! They are definitely going to have to “dumb down” the marketing if they want to appeal to a wider audience.

    What are you expecting to learn from your 23andMe expectoration? Family history, geneology, disease susceptibility?

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  12. Are you going to be using your DNA testing to find out where you / your ancestors have originated from as well? My husband and I watched a TV Show where celebrities did DNA testing to find out their ancestor background and many had big surprises. This particular type of DNA testing could tell what area of the world, country and almost to the city of where your ancestors began (I think, if I remember correctly)

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  13. Ok, although I think this is interesting I don’t think this is personalized genetics services are available here in the US but collecting your own saliva is a bit gross. Thanks for the insight though.

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