Tuesday, June 8, 2010

DNA swapping at 23andme

A few days ago, 23andme sent emails to 96 potentially affected clients warning them that the lab who reads the DNA for the company had mixed-up their genetic identities and sent them some other persons’ results.

The first sign that there was something wrong was a post, published on June 2nd, in the 23andme community section, by a mother who panicked when she accessed her family’s results online: “He was not a match for any of us. I checked his haplogroups and they were different from ours. I started screaming. A month before my son was born two local hospitals had baby switches”, she wrote. 23andme responded two days later telling her they were analyzing what might have happened.

Mistakes happen. What I don’t understand is that non-affected clients like myself only today learned about this through various blogs, and not directly from 23andme. The company’s response has been overly discrete, and to date, there has been no public announcement from them. It would really help if they were more transparent!

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