Time Magazine has named 23andMe, one of the first consumer genetic testing services, its 2008 Best Invention of the Year.
23andMe, named for the 23 chromosome pairs every human has, set itself apart from other DNA-testing services, because “it does the best job of making them accessible and affordable,” according to Time.
The company offers a $399 DNA test that includes an ancestry analysis, and a health analysis. The health analysis tests for about 90 predispositions ranging from what eye color you’ll probably pass on to whether you’re likely to get arthritis someday.
Customers are sent a kit by mail that includes a test tube to spit in for the saliva sample and registration materials to log in online. Once the sample is registered and mailed to 23andMe, customers can expect results in about 4-6 weeks.
The company was co-founded by Linda Avey, a biopharmaceutical industry veteran with a background in biology; and Anne Wojcicki, an entrepreneur with experience in healthcare investing and a Yale University degree in biology.
Photo by 23andMe.