Can DNA-based dating apps help you find a love connection? Don’t count on it, scientists say

| | July 19, 2019
pheramor app
Image: Pheramor
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With the direct-to-consumer genetic testing market booming, more and more companies are looking to capitalize on the promise of DNA-based services. Pheramor and startups, like DNA Romance and Instant Chemistry, both based in Canada, claim to match you to a romantic partner based on your genetics. It’s an intriguing alternative to swiping left or right in hopes of finding someone you’re not only physically attracted to but actually want to date. Experts say the science behind such apps isn’t settled though. 

The HLA genes Pheramor analyzes [are] the human version of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC), a gene group found in many species.

The connection between HLA type and attraction goes back to the 1970s, when researchers found that inbred male mice preferred to mate with female mice with a different MHC.

The idea is that choosing a mate with different MHC genes gives animals an evolutionary advantage in terms of immune system defense.

[Zoologist Tristram] Wyatt says he’s skeptical of DNA-based dating apps because there are many subtypes of HLA genes, meaning there’s a fairly low chance that your HLA type and your romantic partner’s would be an exact match, anyway.

Read full, original post: Scientists Doubt Whether DNA-Based Dating Apps Can Help Users Find Love

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