Thursday, March 12, 2009

23andME to do research. One question lingers....

Did you guys catch that Sergey Brin is funding some research into Parkinsons Disease? It turns out that you can have all the money in the world and still get disease.......Or at least pre-disease...

"The study, will be conducted by 23andMe, a company co-founded and co-managed by Mr. Brin’s wife, Anne Wojcicki. The company offers a personal genomics service, in which it scans the DNA submitted by its customers and provides information on their health risks, ancestry and other traits."

There are a couple of issues I need clarified here.

1. Is there an IRB involved to govern 23andME in this "research"?

23andMe will establish a research advisory committee to guide such collaborations. 23andMe may grant researchers associated with partner organizations access to our database of genetic and other contributed personal information. We will ensure that such research partners obtain clearance from institutional review boards, as appropriate, and agree to maintain confidentiality consistent with our privacy statement.

But Not 23andMe. Just their partners.......

2. Is there a cost or coercion involved?

The people with Parkinson’s disease who enter the study would receive the same analysis of their DNA as other 23andMe customers, but would pay only $25 instead of the usual $399.

3. What is so unique about what they are doing?

“The only thing that is remarkable is that there is a very rich man who is going to fund it,” Dr. Stefansson said.
hehehehe.....Oh Kari......

4. Will the research involve special subjects, like children?

“Babies can’t spit into a tube,” Mr. Brin said

I am pretty sure you can fix that Sergey.........

The Sherpa Says: The Buddha is can't escape death. Unless you realize that there is no gene. Do me a favor Mr Brin. Have your wife create an IRB for your new "Research Institution"


Anonymous said...

Mr. Brin is basically paying 23andMe to safe his life (and his wife).

Why he chose 23andMe instead of one of the top PD research labs in the world, I don't know.

If I had a billion dollars and was at a high risk for developing a lethal disease, I would do the same thing that Mr. Brin is doing but I would have chosen a better lab to do the research.


Anonymous said...

"Honey, um, my business model isn't working. I just need your help with one disease. Then I'm sure people will take us seriously. Can you underwrite, say, 10,000 customers? Oh, and can you give Michael J. a call, too? Please? Thanks..."

It's interesting to compare 23andMe's announcement with the study being conducted by Navigenics. They were able to bring together a serious consortium of health care, technology and research partners on the merits of their business model. In addition, they have well-defined and obtainable research goals.