This company wants to lay out your entire genetic blueprint for $2,500
Here’s how the sequencing works:
Like any other consumer genetics test, it all starts by ordering a test.
But unlike a 23andMe or AncestryDNA test, which don’t provide any information that can be considered “actionable” by the FDA, Sure Genomics loops in a physician from its network to gather information about your family history and order the sequencing that intends to answer your specific questions about your health. The physician then prescribes the sequencing, meaning they technically have oversight of the information you’re about to get back.
Next, it’s time to send your spit off to get sequenced in a CLIA-certified lab that works with Sure Genomics. The company analyzes the raw data, comparing it to existing genomic databases to come back with the variety of reports. Finally, you get your results and have the chance to run through them with the assistance of a genetics counselor supplied by Sure Genomics.
Rick White, a co-founder of Sure Genomics, told Business Insider that they’ve been communicating with the FDA to make sure they are on the same page as the regulatory agency in terms of what information they can and can’t provide directly to the person being sequenced.
Here’s what the reports look like once a genome’s been sequenced and interpreted:
Storing an entire genome
When it’s all said and done, Sure Genomics will have sifted through all 3 billion of a person’s base pairs (the building blocks of the genome), along with information about what diseases that person might be predisposed to, or if there are certain medications that might react better with your genes than others.
That amounts to 66 gigabytes worth of information. To store it, Sure Genomics came up with a “Sure Vault” system that keeps it safe and HIPAA compliant, meaning your genetic information won’t fall into the wrong hands. White said the founders’ backgrounds are in tech and software, so they’re really focused on making your genetic information interactive and useful.
“It’s completely secure. Only you have access to it,” he said. That means there’s no plans to build out a database using existing customer genetic information. “This is your most private information. We want to stand strong as somebody who is completely focused on consumer privacy first.”
White said the goal is to get the cost of the initial sequence down even farther, which is certainly possible based on how quickly the cost of sequencing a genome is falling. The hope, White said, is to make the information available in the genome available to everyone.
Sure Genomics expects to start shipping collection kits by June 2016.