Ancestry Launches Consumer Genetic Health Testing as a Rival to 23andMe
The following is a press release written by Ancestry:
Ancestry®, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, today announced the launch of AncestryHealth® powered by Next Generation Sequencing (NGS), signifying a new era in consumers’ access to important information about their health. Designed to help people understand their risk for developing certain inheritable health conditions, the advanced testing technology behind AncestryHealth provides more comprehensive genetic screening of an expanded set of health conditions — such as heart disease, breast cancer, colon cancer and blood disorders. AncestryHealth powered by NGS looks at more places in a person’s DNA than microarray-based testing technology.
“When it comes to your health and your family’s health, the more you know, the better,” said Dr. Ron Park, MD, EVP of Health and DNA, Ancestry. “With the launch of AncestryHealth powered by NGS, we are helping people have access to more comprehensive data about their genetic risks — and providing support with understanding those risks — at a time when protecting our health is a major concern.”
The launch marks a dramatic shift in consumer-initiated genetic testing, which, for the last decade, has largely been based on microarray technology. Because NGS technology reads parts of the genome that a microarray cannot, the NGS technology that powers AncestryHealth does a better job of determining if someone is at greater risk for some of the most common inherited conditions. Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) developed NGS technology for AncestryHealth.
In fact, AncestryHealth powered by NGS achieves about 80-90 percent detection of inherited risk for specific health conditions. For breast and ovarian cancer, for example, this means the NGS technology powering AncestryHealth has a risk detection rate four times higher than most microarray-based tests.
“As the market leader in consumer genomics for more than a decade, we are proud to make an important leap forward in democratizing access to comprehensive genetic health risk detection,” said Margo Georgiadis, president and chief executive officer at Ancestry. “We are committed to our long-term vision of helping millions get on the path toward living longer, healthier lives through affordable personalized, preventive health screening in partnership with the healthcare ecosystem.”
A More Guided, Supportive Experience for Consumers
AncestryHealth powered by NGS will replace the microarray-based AncestryHealth Core to provide consumers with a more comprehensive view of genetic health, at an affordable price point.
AncestryHealth powered by NGS combines a more advanced testing technology with simple, step-by-step guidance for tracking and recording family health history all in one place. In partnership with PWNHealth, an independent network of board-certified genetic counselors, geneticists, physicians and other allied health professionals, AncestryHealth powered by NGS offers genetic information on risks combined with educational resources, remote access to genetic counselors and a clinical lab report consumers can share with their healthcare provider to help them understand their results and make more informed choices.
The platform also allows users to create and download a family health history record they can use to facilitate discussions and reduce the burden of filling out forms. Family health history is a critical piece of the puzzle that, combined with the comprehensive genetic health information offered by NGS, can provide a more holistic view of an individual’s health risks.
Ancestry is committed to safeguarding customers’ data and privacy. Just like all Ancestry offerings, AncestryHealth powered by NGS gives customers control over their data at all times. Ancestry does not share customers’ DNA data with insurers, employers or third-party marketers.
Beginning Aug. 3, AncestryHealth powered by NGS is available to adults (ages 18+) in the United States, with the exception of New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island, for $179. Existing AncestryDNA® customers can upgrade to AncestryHealth for $99. You can purchase and activate the kit via the AncestryHealth website: https://www.ancestry.com/health.
Ancestry®, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, empowers journeys of personal discovery to enrich lives. With our unparalleled collection of 24 billion records and over 18 million people in our growing AncestryDNA network, customers can discover their family story and gain actionable insights about their health and wellness. For over 30 years, we’ve built trusted relationships with millions of people who have chosen us as the platform for discovering, preserving and sharing the most important information about themselves and their families.
Bringing nearly a decade of experience in genomic science together with the world’s largest consumer DNA network and its world-class science team, Ancestry harnesses the power of genetics and millions of phenotypic data points to gain deeper insights into personalized genomics.
In 2019, Ancestry launched AncestryHealth® to empower people to take proactive steps – in collaboration with their healthcare provider – to address potential health risks identified in their genes and family health history. The tests offered by AncestryHealth® are physician-ordered and are not diagnostic. The tests are not reviewed or approved by the FDA and are not available in NY, NJ or RI.
For more information about Ancestry’s commitment to advancing genomic science, including Ancestry’s COVID-19 Research Study, visit: https://www.ancestry.com/health.