23 and Me part 1

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You won’t be mistaken to think you have seen this advertised on the television recently. I did and it immediately caught my eye which is unusual as adverts rarely do.
I contacted 23andMe and they agreed to send me out a kit.

I have always been interested in DNA and genetics. I think it’s fascinating how almost everything in our body is set out and mapped. I know little about it and by taking part in this I hope to find out much more. To think I could walk past a stranger in the street, have a random conversation in a bar or bus and that person could somehow be genetically related is pretty crazy.
What 23andMe offer is a full DNA profile. This includes so many things and it’s probably best to pop over to their website to see all of what they do, but to cut it short here’s just the basics.

•View reports on over 100 health conditions and traits
•Find out about your inherited risk factors and how you might respond to certain medications
•Discover your lineage and find DNA relatives

I received my own kit within a few days. It’s a small box with the sampler and also a pen drive. The instructions are in English and very straightforward, nothing to complicated.
The sampler is just a plastic funnel.

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Open up the lid and then spit! This is a little gross. I had to spit a fair few times for it to be enough to reach the fill level, maybe 15 times. Once full the lid snaps shut and a liquid mixes with the saliva. I can only assume this is to keep it fresh or preserved in transit.

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I probably should add that when doing the saliva sample, no food or drink is allowed 30 minutes prior, I guess this would interfere with the results.
The sample is then placed and sealed in the bag and the bag placed back in the box it arrived in.

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This box as you can see has the address on the reverse. The testing labs are based in the Netherlands and the return postage is included in the kit price.

So now I sit and wait. It takes approximately 2/3 weeks for the results. I will get the results by email and will be informed of the progress such as when the kit is received.

I did have to input a lot of information on the website as well as register the kit on receipt. The surveys ask for basic details – name, address, age etc and questions on family background and health.

I am eagerly awaiting my results and will of course post when I have them. I am looking forward to see if I have any distant relatives out there who are already in the 23andMe database. Who knows maybe I’m 100th in line to the throne or related to a billionaire ha. I just hope it doesn’t tell me I am likely to get some awful health condition.

This is not a cheap service. It comes with a price of £125 so I am hoping for some very informative information to come from my sample.

2 Comments

  1. Jacqueline Roberts
    January 19, 2015 / 14:08

    I did that as they wanted People with Parkinson’s to research so I got it free. I liked the fact it links you with Genetic relatives.

    • January 19, 2015 / 14:09

      Have you got your results yet Jacqueline? Im both excited and a little nervous awaitng mine.

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