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177 of 188 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A steal for the price
I think for $99 this is quite a steal. I took it to mainly get my genetic markers for methylation for some health issues and got much more. Yasko's test for methylation genes costs $495 and you only get 30 genes while with 23andme you get nearly a million genes for a fraction of the price. I do agree that you really need some 3rd party software to do some interpretation...
Published 15 months ago by Paula Thomas

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749 of 835 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The details of their privacy policy
I ordered a kit several weeks ago, but I have yet to return it. Why? Because I read the (incredibly detailed) fine print of their privacy policy and started doing some research on genetic privacy. Even if you decide to opt-out of 23andMe's research program and don't give them any "Self-Reported" information, 23andMe still sells their partners more than enough data to...
Published 12 months ago by johny q


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177 of 188 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A steal for the price, April 15, 2013
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
I think for $99 this is quite a steal. I took it to mainly get my genetic markers for methylation for some health issues and got much more. Yasko's test for methylation genes costs $495 and you only get 30 genes while with 23andme you get nearly a million genes for a fraction of the price. I do agree that you really need some 3rd party software to do some interpretation for you or spend a long time looking up the genes in snpedia.com to see what they do. geneticgenie is a free one that is helpful. Livewello also has an app for $20 that interprets a lot more genes. You just put the raw data file from 23andme into the app and it does the interpretation. I actually paid for Yasko's test and later did 23andme too when I found out the price dropped and I don't regret it. The main thing is just because you have a gene doesn't mean you are going to have a problem with it. You are just more likely to than someone who doesn't have it.
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749 of 835 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The details of their privacy policy, June 20, 2013
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
I ordered a kit several weeks ago, but I have yet to return it. Why? Because I read the (incredibly detailed) fine print of their privacy policy and started doing some research on genetic privacy. Even if you decide to opt-out of 23andMe's research program and don't give them any "Self-Reported" information, 23andMe still sells their partners more than enough data to connect your name and location (among other things) to your genetic information. For instance, 23andMe collects your "Web Behavior Information"...including your IP address, operating system, your ISP, browser type, cookies, anything you mention in your emails to customer support, and worst of all: web beacons. These are special cookies that track all of your browsing history. A cookie from Facebook can instantly give 23andMe access to your FB profile name. Any profile picture you post on 23andMe can be downloaded by an app developer. App developers are given access to your traits. How many people in a specific zip code of a small town have 1) red, curly hair 2) are good at sprinting 3) have bad teeth 4) poor memory 5) and diabetes? All of this data -- combined with your "web behavior and genetic information -- makes it incredibly easy for any app developer (or drug company) to identify you (even if the developer (technically) only has access to your "anonymous" id number). It is especially easy to identify males who have some sort of relatively uncommon disease. This is a big issue in politics right now. It is called "re-identification" in case you want to learn more about it. You can also google "23andMe's API." Overall, 23andMe's privacy FAQ is very misleading, and possibly illegal.
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88 of 96 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lack of customer focus, clunky user interface. Still, a good hobby., June 21, 2013
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
(Strike outdated complaint about features taken offline in June 2013, and upgrade from 3 stars to 4 stars)

Most of the matches are to distant (like 4th or more distant) cousins, and most of the members only show family trees going back to their grandparents, so finding some meaningfully close relative is very unlikely. I was pleased to find several distant relatives who were well documented, by family trees on Ancestry.com as well as by the DNA matches on 23andme, with the most recent common ancestors born in the late 19th century in one case and the mid 18th century in other cases. It does give you a paternity test of sorts going back generations, if it shows you are a blood relative of your "family tree relatives." Some of the tools available are very slow and tedious to use, such as Ancestry Lab, wherein you can learn what portions of what chromosomes you match someone on, and you can see which of your matches are related to each other. It has a very arbitrary and time-wasting limit in that it allows comparison to 3 other people at a time. If you find that some cousins are through your mother or father then it shows that other cousins who match you in the same portion of the same chromosome are from the other parent.

The health reports available to those who signed up before the FDA imposed a freeze on presentation of health data are not very useful, in general, telling you that, say most people have a 9% chance of getting some disease, but your having two copies of some gene changes your probability to 8% or 10%. Big whooping difference! Rarely is any health effect big enough to justify a lifestyle change, or to justify getting some test absent symptoms of a condition. Some of the medical statements are quite contrary to actual medical histories, and would tend to mislead you and make you think you were unlikely to get some disease you actually have, and which your close relatives had.

They have a very long lead time to do the testing, which may be due to a backlog and inadequate resources devoted to the testing rather than the testing actually going on for all those weeks or months. My first sample was "lost in the mail."

(Edited to add): I am please with the price. It is well worth the $99. Getting new distant relatives, seeing what portion of which chromosomes we inherited from some common ancestor, and entering it in a spreadsheet to find which other relatives inherited the same sequence makes for a nice hobby, like stamp collecting, though the common ancestors are often 6 generations back, and the people are not as close as the "fourth cousin" rating their system give the relationship. There is also interesting drama on the discussion boards, when someone finds unknown half siblings, or finds that their Dad is not their biological father, and the parents have "some 'splaining to do." The community is generally helpful and supportive. And you can download your raw data and export it to Gedmatch where they have more powerful analysis software with regard to your genealogical relationships. The family trees as displayed on 23andme are very tedious to examine.

(Edited a second time: Strike the complaints from 2913 as outdated an no longer relevant and add the following:) I am raising the rating from 3 stars to 4 stars. In the time since their June 2013 growing pains interfered with use of the site, they have maintained the site efficiently. It is a shame that the FDA does not allow new members to see their health info but new members can still download their raw DNA info and use a site called Promethease for the health related output. Every few days some new cousins show up in the Family Finder section and I invite them to share DNA info. About a third or half of them do share and I add to my spreadsheeet info as to what regions of which chromosomes we share, and which other cousins we share a common ancestor with. I have over 300 sharing, and have identified "cousin clusters" who share some common ancestor (often unknown). If one of the cousins in the cluster has a family tree going back far enough (sometimes to the 1700's) then I label the cluster as being descendants of that ancestor and the cousins may learn something they never knew about their history. As I said above it seems as interesting and harmless a hobby, say, stamp collecting, coin collecting, or trainspotting. I uploaded the DNA to Gedmatch and find it to be useful in that I can search for matches on family trees (they have about 6000 trees submitted at Gedmatch) as well as matching on DNA (people have uploaded their DNA from several other sites such as Ancestry.com.
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154 of 173 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!, July 15, 2010
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
Everyone should try this!!

This seems to be the best DNA service out there. It has at least as many features as other consumer DNA services and presents the info in a VERY user-friendly way. Plus, they add new features all the time.

On the health side, it gives you info about:
- your genetic predisposition and carrier status (or lack of) for diseases,
- how well your body will likely respond to certain drug treatments, and
- your probable genetic traits.

On the ancestry side, it gives you info about:
- your ancestor's geographic regions,
- (if you opt-in and your family joins) you can compare DNA with relatives to see which lines you got which traits from,
- (if you opt-in) you can also find (and, if you like, contact) close or distant relatives. It's awesome for those trying to find out more about their genealogy.

I found the ancestry stuff totally fascinating and the health stuff very useful. WORTH EVERY PENNY.
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215 of 248 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Worst customer service I've encountered in the digital age, July 3, 2013
By 
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
23andMe has the worst customer service I've encountered in the digital age. Astonishing!

I ordered two kits (thus they had my e-mail, address, ...). The kits arrived, with directions to go to a "start" Web page to register. I completed the entire registration. It then asked me to log in or create a new account. Since I'd already received the kits, I assumed I already had an account (wrong!). I picked wrongly, and there's no way to get back to that point.

Every screen asks for my registration e-mail -- which doesn't work as I don't have an account (and can't create one).

There is no telephone number for help (this is pretty basic Web interface stuff, which needs to be handled by humans -- well, actually, you'd think they would have fixed things like this by now).

The online help request took days to get a reply, and what I received from "Vivian" was gibberish (she clearly hasn't used their Web site). To top it off, she signed it "32andMe" (I'll just count that as amusing -- but, seriously, she ought to have a pre-built signature in her customer e-mail -- gee, this kind of stuff is basic -- all indicative of a poor quality system, broken in simple ways at every step. Many people need to be fired ASAP. I'm curious, of course, on whether anyone reads these comments; but I know the answer to that!).

I still can't:
- find a way to log in
- find a way to create a new account
- find a human on telephone.
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174 of 200 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Some Good Information but No Print Option, May 29, 2013
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This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
I found that the "23 and me" results were interesting and well presented, but they provide no Print option. According to their FAQs, they do not provide a printed copy of results. That's OK with me, but they don't provide any way to download the results as a PDF or other document type. In fact, when I tried to save the webpages as PDF files (I have Adobe Acrobat PRO XI installed), the resulting document was nearly unreadable.

Conclusions: 23 and me does present some interesting information, but they apparently have gone out of their way to prevent you from printing out the results.
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54 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very useful for me - your mileage may vary, July 28, 2013
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
I purchased my kit directly from 23andMe after keeping tabs on the service for two years and waiting for the price to go down. That said, I thoroughly researched the service, knew what I was buying and had realistic expectations. I also didn't have to contact customer service so I can't comment on that aspect of the company.

I think it was well worth what I spent. Just knowing the likelihood of negative drug reactions is, in my case, a potential life saver. The new findings reports are something I pay close attention to as well. You never know what they are working on that might have information pertinent to you.

Having my raw data has allowed me to look further into a genetic condition that runs in my family but isn't something that 23andMe specifically tests for yet. I had a 50/50 chance of inheriting something I didn't want. Now I know I lost that particular genetic lottery. Environmental and lifestyle factors may still keep the disease from manifesting but, armed with the knowledge that it is a real possibility, I can keep a close eye out for symptoms and not make the mistake of writing them off to normal aging.

Some people would not want to know, but I did. I can now undergo regular testing which will allow me to start treatment at the earliest detectable stage of the disease, should it manifest. My doctor tells me that the standard treatment is to first take a "wait and see" approach but, in my case, he won't be doing that. He's delighted to have the knowledge he needs to treat me more effectively, should the need arise.

The genealogy aspect of the testing is certainly interesting but it isn't something I have a huge interest in so I can't comment on its usefulness. I have had several requests from people who are possibly 4th or 5th cousins who would like to discuss our possible relationships but they don't contact me directly as 23andMe keeps contact info private until you approve its release.

Take what you will from the negative ratings. Every individual has to weigh their fears against their desire for information. Sometimes the price of a thing isn't measured in money. If you go into it with your eyes open I don't think you'll be disappointed. Hopefully you'll be boringly normal. Believe me, that's a wonderful thing. If you are then you should be very happy.

Personally, I highly recommend the service.
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61 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well Worth $99!, March 7, 2013
By 
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
I received a 23andMe DNA testing kit as a combined Christmas-Birthday-Retirement Gift last December from my son. The instructions that described sample preparation and mailing were clear. After about 8 weeks, I was notified by e-mail that the results of the test were available at the 23andMe web site.

The ancestry results were fun to review and they were essentially correct. The physical traits were, for the most part correct. The health results were encouraging, as no disease markers were revealed. The disease risk results are useful and I plan to share that information with my physician.

The 23andMe Genetic test is well worth the money. The product will become even more useful as more people are tested. It is the beginning of a new era in medical technology.
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139 of 164 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Takes forever & NO way to contact them!, March 27, 2013
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
Ordered a kit for myself and my husband on the recommendation of a cousin...really excited to see what our DNA results would be. Well...we waited 6 weeks...ok...waited 7 weeks...then searched and searched for a way to contact the lab or someone to see what the status of our tests. Searched the website and the web...there is NO contact or Customer Service number or even an email. So...we have to just continue to wait and hope we get our results. I would never recommend this service to anyone. We should have been smarter consumers and checked this before we sent in our money. Shame on us!
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148 of 178 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars save your $$$, March 3, 2013
By 
et "et in Indiana" (Greencastle, IN USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information (Health and Beauty)
Apparantly my sample was lost. Mailed spouse sample same day at same P.O. Notified his arrived. No such thing for mine.

No way to contact 23andMe but by menu which is highly unsatisfactory. No way to resolve issue. Will cancel credit card submission if I can.

This is no way to deal directly with the public. . . but I am doing what I can to inform with my feedback.
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