Monday, November 19, 2007
I was showered with a host of emails from my readers today. The GTO highlight, The Issue feature, Scienceroll's commentary all the readers had to say one thing. Sherpa, take it easy. You beat up on DNADirect and their questionable questionnaires, You picked on Forbes giving hype to deCODE, You pointed out that Navigenics had some sketchy ethics, Slammed Salugen, Attacked Myriad, and Now little 'ol 23 and Me. Did you have to sink this low?
Sink this low?
Wow! Ok, so I have been known to blow my top a time or 2. Can you blame me? Have I stated any incorrect facts? Maybe some, which I have quickly amended. Including the fact that DNADirect does not "mark up" test costs. Even though I am still unsure of how a company who sells tests at cost and charges 75 USD for phone consultation (even less than an academic center that is losing money on counseling pays a genetic counselor) makes any money.
So why did my readership feel this way? The answer. "Why won't you endorse us using suspect science data to give us suspect risk assessments?"
Yes, it is true. Even the educated are intrigued by this little black box known as the Gene Journal and Risk calculator. Fine, I like the magic 8 ball too. So here it is. I am putting it on the record. I will not hate you if you use 23 and ME. In fact, I suggest you use it after taking a family history and having the familial risks evaluated. If these SNPs give you more insight than a family history....I applaud you. Here's my last appeal, please realize that this data will not be considered medical records if you use a non-healthcare company to screen your genome.
If you want the BEST coverage, you should use deCODE, 23andME, AND Navigenics services. This is the only way you will get ALL the SNPs your little lemming heart can desire.
Then, when you want to make your genome a medical record and protect it, ask your physician to review the data. If they rebuff, go see a geneticist. Helix Health of Connecticut can interpret the SNPs in concert with your family history. Your Genome In Context........ ;)
The Sherpa Says: Please don't hate me for the aggressive commentary. I am not a hateful guy. I just call it like I see it. Maybe you see it differently and that's the great thing about the Blogosphere. Different viewpoints, Different ideas, The Same Passion.