Consumer genetic health-test market expands: Ancestry launches new service, paired with professional counseling

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Image: Ancestry

Ancestry, the consumer genetics company that has until now focused on helping people understand their family history, on [October 15] revealed new products that will allow consumers to get health information based on their DNA results — putting it in direct competition with 23andMe.

Ancestry has chosen a very different strategy than its rival. Unlike 23andMe tests, which are ordered by consumers, AncestryHealth products will be ordered by a physician who works for PWNHealth, a New York-based national network of doctors that says on its website that its mission is “to enable safe and easy access to diagnostic testing.” Access to professional genetic counselors, also from PWNHealth, will be included in the purchase price, which will be as low as $49.

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Catherine Ball, Ancestry’s chief scientific officer, said that the decision to focus on highly actionable diseases results from Ancestry’s efforts to understand the needs of its customers and the primary care physicians who will need to help them react to their test results. The key, she said, was to include only tests that can “improve outcomes for our customers and for their families.”

Read full, original post: Ancestry launches consumer genetics tests for health, intensifying rivalry with 23andMe

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