Founded in 2006, 23andMe set out with an ambitious goal: To one day make the human genome searchable by becoming the go-to resource for personal genetic information.
Founded in 2006, 23andMe set out with an ambitious goal: To one day make the human genome searchable by becoming the go-to resource for personal genetic information. Leveraging DNA analysis technology and web-based interactive tools, the company developed a “Personal Genome Service” that allows anyone and everyone to access and better understand their genetic data, including their ancestry and predisposition to certain diseases.
But the company believes that its true differentiation and value proposition today derives from a novel research model. Along with providing users with 200+ health and traits reports and ancestry info, the service enables users to opt-into sharing their medical and family history, lifestyle and other phenotypic data, contributing it to genetic research or participating directly in studies and surveys.
So, when 23andMe was recently awarded its first patent for determining a user’s risk for Parkinson’s Disease, it was naturally seen as big validation for its crowdsourced and community-driven approach to genetic research.
With its patent representing both a validation of its research and model and a potential new revenue stream), 23andMe now wants to double down on patient and community-driven research. And what better way to follow your first patent than with your first acquisition? On Tuesday, the company officially announced that it is scooping up the four-year-old CureTogether, a similarly-focused startup that aims to give people the tools they need to create their own research studies, learn about their health, and connect with experts and others who suffer from similar conditions.