California Public Health Bureaucrats Attack Your Genetic Liberty

California public health bureaucrats think that you are too stupid to handle your own genetic information. So they have sent cease and desist letters to 13 consumer genetic testing firms telling them that they can't do business with California residents. New York bureaucrats have been doing the same thing. The new consumer genetic screening companies argue that they are not making medical diagnoses, but offering a service which educates consumers about various genetic risks they may have.

Princeton biologist Lee Silver, who had his genes scanned by one of the companies - 23andMe - being told to cease and desist, explains:

According to the California health department, it’s dangerous for me to see this information about myself without a doctor's permission. Does this make any sense at all? I can tell you that anyone willing to spend $1,000 for a file containing 500,000 lines with a bunch of letters and numbers [like those shown in his blog post] knows more about the genetic meanings of those characters than 99.9% of the doctors in this country....

This is a boutique product being sold to individuals who are simply curious about their heritage and their predispositions to certain behaviors and other traits. As 23andMe makes perfectly clear, “This service is for research and educational use only.” If you are concerned about certain results and you bring the information to your doctor to consider some sort of treatment, what’s wrong with that? And if you decide to treat yourself . . . well that’s exactly what millions of people do every day with dietary supplements after receiving bogus diagnoses on radio and TV, and no one stops them.

But the thing that really angers me about Karen Nickel and her colleagues in California is that she really doesn’t understand what she is trying to regulate when she questions the “accuracy” of the product. The DNA information that the company gives you is more than 99.9% accurate (I’ve assessed it myself). Some of these DNA variants can provide probabilistic assessments of your risk to certain diseases (which you can look up on the internet). Those assessments -- whatever they are -- are a hell of lot more “accurate” than the stuff routinely passed through the mass media. I think that the real reason Karen is so scared-to-death is that the new era of private genetic tests will almost certainly destroy a worldview (that she and others cling to) in which genes don’t matter at all. And so like the Pope in Galileo’s time, she wants to stop the telescopes from peering into our own bodies, at our own molecules.

I also had 23andMe scan my genes for an upcoming article for reason in which I will reveal all of my known genetic flaws and explain why those revelations don't matter. The nifty consumer interface supplied by 23andMe is actually very easy to understand and use. Among other things, the biomedical literature suggests that I have some genetic variations that confer slightly lower risk than average of esophageal cancer and heart attack and moderately higher risk of atrial fibrillation. In addition, the family legend about Cherokee ancestors is bogus, though the mitochondrial DNA I received from my mother apparently descended from a woman who entered Europe about 40,000 years ago (and perhaps helped kill off the Neanderthals).

Silver is correct when he writes:

And if you really are scared to death by the results of such a test, no one is forcing you to do it!

In the meantime, some of the consumer genomics companies are pushing back. If it turns out that ancient 20th century laws actually empower regulators to prevent consumer access to this information, California and New York legislators should immediately vote to overturn these regulations.

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  • ||

    Sounds to me like thses folks might have a wee bit too much tim on their hands.

    JT
    http://www.Ultimate-Anonymity.com

  • Nigel Watt||

    If it turns out that ancient 20th century laws actually empower regulators to prevent consumer access to this information, California and New York legislators should immediately vote to overturn these regulations.



    Prefatory clauses are a popular subject this week, and I think that one is unnecessary.

  • Neanderthal||

    Bastard! I knew it was you!

  • anon||

    Nigel - ?

  • ||

    Silver make a good point, right up until the part about the health official obviously being a blank-slater who hates genetics because of some ideology.

    Silver is obviously very attached to a philosophical framework about genetics and their influence on us, and there's nothing wrong with that, but it's a rookie mistake to assume that your political opponents' are your own mirror image.

    Barry Goldwater wasn't on the other side of the Civil Rights act from the desegregationists because he was a segregationist, but because of a completely different set of beliefs having to do with property rights and federalism.

    Karen Nickel "and her colleagues" are almost certainly not on the other side of this issue from Lee Silver because of a political belief about genetic influence, but because of a completely different set of beliefs about nanny-state stuff and proper medical practice.

  • ||

    But the thing that really angers me about Karen Nickel and her colleagues in California is that she really doesn't understand what she is trying to regulate

    This is extremely common.
    Legislators don't understand this, the economy, or the Internet (although, I hear John McCain is aware that it exists), yet they feel they are perfectly capable of effectively "managing" these things.

  • ||

    I also had 23andMe scan my genes for an upcoming article for reason in which I will reveal all of my known genetic flaws and explain why that doesn't matter.

    Ewww! Ick! TMI. No one wants to see your DNA Ron. Now if you could persuade Ms Howley to get tested and publish her results. I'm sure we'd all like the opportunity to look for the 'hot, smart, freedom loving' gene.

  • J||

    So dumb. I think Joe's interpretation is also probably right, but who knows.

  • ||

    "In addition, the family legend about Cherokee ancestors is bogus"

    Have you ever noticed that every white person you talk to says they have some native american ancestry, when in truth more whites have black or hispanic ancestry in them.

    Native americans were reviled as compared to other races during the formation of this nation.

    I am white and heard that crap as I grew up as did my white wife. Now after she has been doing genealogy for about 5 years we know better.

  • ||

    Warren,

    'hot, smart, freedom loving' gene

    Already got that...

    ACUGUUUAGGCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUAU
    AGCUAGAUUUAGCGGAUCGUACGUGGGCGGCUUAGUCGUGAUCGUA
    GCUGAUCGAUCGUGGGCUUGAUCGAUCGAUCCUAUCGUAGGCUUAG
    CGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUUAGGCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUU
    AGCUUAGGGCUAUAGCUAGAUUUAGCGGAUCGUACGUGGGCGGCUU
    AGUCGUGAUCGUAGCUGAUCGAUCGUGGGCUUGAUCUGGGCUUGAU
    CGAUCGAUCCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUUAG
    GCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAUGAUCGAUCGUGGGCU
    UGAUCGAUCGAUCCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGC
    UUAGGCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUAUAGCUA
    GAUUUAGCGGAUCGUACGUGGGCGGCUUAGUCGUGAUCGUAGCUGA

    Although, might have missed an "A" somewhere in there. My memory's a bit rusty these days.

  • ||

    Warren: Couldn't agree more. :-)

  • ||

    Why would the busybodies in California and New York want to prohibit people from getting information? I'd like to see how many of these public heath bureaucrats are =on board with mandatory dietary information being provided by food sellers. Just like DNA information, the average Californian is far too ignorant to understand the info required by law on a box of Froot Loops.

  • Episiarch||

    Warren, get your tongue off the floor.

    and perhaps helped kill off the Neanderthals

    Uh, we didn't kill off the Neanderthals, Ron. We merged with them.

    / absorption mode off

  • ed||

    You could link this post with one of the many gun-control posts. I've heard from many a control advocate that increased gun ownership will lead to more suicides. So a gun owner finds out he's predisposed to Lou Gehrig's Disease...see where this is headed?

  • Nigel Watt||

    ACUGUUUAGGCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUAU
    AGCUAGAUUUAGCGGAUCGUACGUGGGCGGCUUAGUCGUGAUCGUA
    GCUGAUCGAUCGUGGGCUUGAUCGAUCGAUCCUAUCGUAGGCUUAG
    CGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUUAGGCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUU
    AGCUUAGGGCUAUAGCUAGAUUUAGCGGAUCGUACGUGGGCGGCUU
    AGUCGUGAUCGUAGCUGAUCGAUCGUGGGCUUGAUCUGGGCUUGAU
    CGAUCGAUCCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUUAG
    GCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAUGAUCGAUCGUGGGCU
    UGAUCGAUCGAUCCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGC
    UUAGGCUAUCGUAGGCUUAGCGCGUAUUAGCUUAGGGCUAUAGCUA
    GAUUUAGCGGAUCGUACGUGGGCGGCUUAGUCGUGAUCGUAGCUGA



    Your genes are coded in RNA?

  • ||

    Reinmoose said:

    This is extremely common.


    I don't think that's the case here. I side with joe. Their worldview is that anything related to medicine must be filtered through the eyes of a "qualified" physician. Direct contact with the patient is a no-no, because of the standing assumption that the patient can't be trusted with their own help.

    This is just another example of the government trying to protect us from ourselves and calling it "public health". Absurd.

  • ||

    Sugarfree: Isn't that a readout for some kind of RNA rather than DNA?

  • Nigel Watt||

    Ha, I scooped a reason editor.

  • ||

    Epi--Eww. I dunno about you, but I prefer my women bit more evolved.

  • ||

    I can't be blamed for the fact you two are poor and have to use shoddy, out-dated DNA. Get a real job and join the R(NA)evolution, baby.

  • Guy Montag||

    So, I need to stay away from California and New York if I want to keep my genes and guns?

    I might be able to manage that.

  • Guy Montag||

    How about some pictures of Ms Howley in tight jeans as a warmup for her hot genes?

  • ||

    Oh i see, MP. So it's not that she doesn't understand it, it's that she thinks she knows that there might be negative consequences to this unless it's called for by a doctor... I'm not sure I see a huge difference, but I'll agree to the difference.

  • Average Californian||

    the average Californian is far too ignorant to understand the info required by law on a box of Froot Loops.

    Thanks to our CA public schools, I can't even read "Froot Loops" -- but am fully capable of filing a lawsuit against General Mills on the grounds the name is offensive.

  • ||

    Episiarch: Interesting possibility from PNAS:

    At the center of the debate on the emergence of modern humans and their spread throughout the globe is the question of whether archaic Homo lineages contributed to the modern human gene pool, and more importantly, whether such contributions impacted the evolutionary adaptation of our species. A major obstacle to answering this question is that low levels of admixture with archaic lineages are not expected to leave extensive traces in the modern human gene pool because of genetic drift. Loci that have undergone strong positive selection, however, offer a unique opportunity to identify low-level admixture with archaic lineages, provided that the introgressed archaic allele has risen to high frequency under positive selection. The gene microcephalin (MCPH1) regulates brain size during development and has experienced positive selection in the lineage leading to Homo sapiens. Within modern humans, a group of closely related haplotypes at this locus, known as haplogroup D, rose from a single copy {approx}37,000 years ago and swept to exceptionally high frequency ({approx}70% worldwide today) because of positive selection. Here, we examine the origin of haplogroup D. By using the interhaplogroup divergence test, we show that haplogroup D likely originated from a lineage separated from modern humans {approx}1.1 million years ago and introgressed into humans by {approx}37,000 years ago. This finding supports the possibility of admixture between modern humans and archaic Homo populations (Neanderthals being one possibility). Furthermore, it buttresses the important notion that, through such adminture, our species has benefited evolutionarily by gaining new advantageous alleles. The interhaplogroup divergence test developed here may be broadly applicable to the detection of introgression at other loci in the human genome or in genomes of other species.

  • Guy Montag||

    Epi,

    Ron just calld you a homo, I think.

  • ||

    Nice trilogy of novels for Neanderthal fans.

    Parallel Earth where Homo Sapien died out instead. The Neanderthal world is a bit socialist paradise but they achieved it through fairly realistic means and fairly consistently with current understanding of how hunter/gathers societies worked.

  • Mister DNA||

    I approve of this post.

  • ||

    What benefit to society comes from thinking you have Cherokee blood? The myth definately ran through my family, until finally my siblings and I figured out it was probably bullshit. Should I worry for my Dad's 17 grandkids that aren't being conned?

  • ||

    Keep your laws off my body!

    I'm guessing that's something Ms. Nickel and Co. can get behind.

  • Guy Montag||

    James Ard,

    Unless you can prove you have enough Injun background to get some "free" land (I don't) or you are trying to get some other government handout that requires ancient Asian immigrant roots, or you are trying to use it to get tenure for some total crap university instructor seat, then it really does not matter.

    BTW, everybody born on the American land mass is a Native American.

  • Episiarch||

    Very interesting, Ron. Thanks.

  • Rhywun||

    Nice trilogy of novels for Neanderthal fans.



    I liked those, but not as much as some of his earlier stuff.

  • ||

    James Ard,

    Having worked with hundreds of genealogists, the vast majority with this belief, I have a nice answer and a mean answer.

    Nice: It is a way to feel as if you have a connection to state/country that is deeper than other people, due to a unbroken genetic heritage.It's a superiority through seniority thing.

    Mean: Victimology has become such a powerful force, claiming heritage to a oppressed group is a way to deal with white guilt.

  • ||

    Have you ever noticed that every white person you talk to says they have some native american ancestry, when in truth more whites have black or hispanic ancestry in them.

    Meanwhile, American Indian ancestry is much more common among black people in America, and yet you hear much less bragging about it.

  • ||

    I t'ain't got no injun blood in me, dagnabit!

  • robc||

    Re: The Cherokee blood "myth"

    This story also runs in my family. However, extensive geneological research has done nothing to disprove it and has provided some circumstantial evidence towards accepting it. A genetic test would be nice to answer it one way or another, but its not worth $999 to me.

    My grandfather (henryc) is supposedly the grandson of a earlier c who "married" a cherokee woman. I refer to my g-g-grandfather as just c because we have no clear what his name was. I know his father's name, I know grandfather's name, I know his son's name. No clue on his. Even a family bible from that time frame makes no reference to him. He was clearly the black sheep of the family. Also, his 2nd? wife (stepmother of my great grandfather) is included.

    My personal theory (which has some evidence to back it up) - dude marries/knocks up indian chick. Their kid is my great grandfather. Cherokee chick dies/goes away/whatever and dude marries nice, local white chick. They have a few kids and then he croaks it. Nice chick raises kids, including my great grandfather. Family treats her as part of family and tries to forget their son ever existed.

    Theory #2 - its all bullshit.

  • ||

    This is just another example of the government trying to protect us from ourselves and calling it "public health". Absurd.

    Because we're too stupid to be trusted with that information. We might do something irresposible if we have too much information.

  • Guy Montag||

    SugarFree,

    You can add "so some of us can say Injun".

  • robc||

    joe,

    Meanwhile, American Indian ancestry is much more common among black people in America, and yet you hear much less bragging about it.

    Hypothesis: Blacks are more racist than whites.

  • Sam Grove||

    Where do these legislators stand on commercial/private urine testing?

  • Mister DNA||

    What benefit to society comes from thinking you have Cherokee blood?

    I don't know about benefits to society, but virtually every time I've heard some white guy claim he has American Indian blood, it's been in the context of, "You don't wanna mess with me bro, I'm one-quarter Cherokee, so when I get mad, I can't be held responsible for what happens", or some equally ridiculous bullshit.

    On the other hand, claiming to have some Cherokee blood sounds a little more romantic than "My ancestors used to shoot Indians on sight".

    If you lived in Texas in 1900, you pretty much had to go to Oklahoma or New Mexico* if you wanted to sleep with a Native American.

    Okay, so Oklahoma and New Mexico weren't actual states in 1900, but you know what I mean...

  • Guy Montag||

    Where do these legislators stand on commercial/private urine testing?

    You really need to be wearing boots for standing on commercial/private urine, like that guy on "Dirty Jobs".

  • ||

    California public health bureaucrats think that you are too stupid to handle your own genetic information. So they have sent cease and desist letters to 13 consumer genetic testing firms telling them that they can't do business with California residents.

    I'll bet dollars to donuts that it is perfectly legal to send personlized horoscopes to California residents. Not that I want to prohibit people from consulting the stars before they make major life decisions, but doesn't allowing that while prohibiting personalized genetic analysis seem monumentally stupid?

  • ||

    robc:
    Hypothesis: White people try desperately to stand out from each other, and right now being "ethnic" is en vogue.

  • Episiarch||

    Hypothesis: If I am 1/16 (or more) Mohegan or Pequot, I get me my share of that dirty, dirty casino money. Where's my genetic test?

  • robc||

    Reinmoose,

    I could buy that hypothesis except it doesnt explain my grandfather, who has been dead for 21 years and was never en vogue before that, claiming it.

  • ||

    And I second what Mr. DNA said above. I can't tell you how many times i've heard people say stuff like "I'm 1/4 jewish so I'm good with money"

  • ||

    I am 1/2 Irish and 1/2 ???

    I can live with that. If I got the analysis done I might find out something upsetting. Imagine the horror of discovering that you are part [involuntary shudder] Belgian.

  • Mister DNA||

    And I second what Mr. DNA said above. I can't tell you how many times i've heard people say stuff like "I'm 1/4 jewish so I'm good with money"



    I'm 1/4 Jewish, so I'm good with money. I'm 1/4 Chinese, so I'm good with math. The remaining 2/3 of me isn't good at anything...

  • ||

    How can you tell a male chromosome from a female chromosome? You pull their jeans down!

    HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

    ...Oops! Sorry! For a moment there I thought I was back in fourth grade biology.

  • ||

    1/2 Irish, 1/2 German.

    I might invade your country, but it's really just so I can grow potatoes there.

    Irish last name, narrowly avoided being named Patrick. The best thing my mother ever did for me.

  • Nigel Watt||

    I'm a generic Euromutt, so I don't claim to be ethnic.

  • Guy Montag||

    Has anybody proved that the irish are human yet?

  • Episiarch||

    1/2 Irish, 1/2 German

    Another dirty mick.

    I might invade your country, but it's really just so I can grow potatoes there.

    German-Italian here. Axis all the way, baby!

  • Patrick||

    Irish last name, narrowly avoided being named Patrick.

    Baptised on St Paddy's no less.

  • ||

    German-Italian here.

    Wop did you say? I cunt hear you.

  • ||

    Baptised on St Paddy's no less.

    Like Michelob Ultra and soccer, I don't look down on the Patricks, it's just not for me.

    You're not Patrick O'Keeffe, my favoritest bartender in the world, are you?

  • Fluffy||

    1/2 Irish, 1/2 German.

    So when you meet an English guy, do you immediately punch him in the face, but then shortly after that surrender and give him all your stuff?

    Just kidding, I have the same Anglophobic gene mixture myself.

  • Episiarch||

    Christ, it's like a drunk tank in here: full of micks.

  • Paul||

    I told you "pro choice" was just a marketing term.

  • Paul||

    but because of a completely different set of beliefs about nanny-state stuff and proper medical practice.

    Joe

    Explain those different beliefs, the logic behind them, and give us one good reason why we shouldn't utterly ridicule any regulatory attempt to keep my own genetic information from my own eyes.

    In fact, joe, this reminds me of another law that exists in California:

    California Code (BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONS CODE
    SECTION 2541.2)

    (d) If a patient places an order with a contact lens seller other than a physician and surgeon, an optometrist, or a registered dispensing optician, the prescriber or his or her authorized agent shall, upon request of the contact lens seller and in the absence of the actual prescription, attempt to promptly confirm the information contained in the prescription through direct communication with the
    contact lens seller.


    (h) A prescriber shall not condition the availability of an eye
    examination, a contact lens fitting, or the release of a contact lens prescription on a requirement that the patient agree to purchase contact lenses from that prescriber.
    A registered dispensing optician shall not condition the availability of a contact lens fitting on a requirement that the patient agrees to purchase contact lenses from that registered dispensing optician.



  • ||

    Fluffy,

    Except for my hyper-Irish last name and my prodigious ability to drink, I'm just good old fashioned mutt white.

    At least my family was too poor to ever own slaves, something my plantation-descended wife can't say.

  • ||

    "archaic Homo populations "

    not that there's anything wrong with that.


    joe, I caught a show on pbs a while back that did genetic tests on some popular black people. Maya Angelou, Dave Chapelle Whoopi Goldberg and some others iirc. They all had stories about Cherokee blood in the family. All were wrong. The geneticist said according to their study, only a very very small part of the black population has indian mixed in. Caucasian was much more prevalent.

  • ||

    Feh. Only girly-men claim Cherokee heritage. Real men are part Apache.

    Actually, I'm probably part-Navajo or Pueblo (based on where my paternal grandparents came from in New Mexico), but there were plenty of Apache around there, too, and Apache sounds better than Pueblo.

  • Patrick||

    You're not Patrick O'Keeffe, my favoritest bartender in the world, are you?

    Afraid not.

    Last name is a version of McWhatever which is totally unpronouncable to 99% of the population on first glance.

  • ||

    Christ, it's like a drunk tank in here: full of micks.

    As you may have heard, God created whiskey to prevent the Irish from ruling the world.

    There are only two kinds of people in the world.
    The Irish and those that wish they were Irish.

  • Nigel Watt||

    Last name is a version of McWhatever which is totally unpronouncable to 99% of the population on first glance.



    McGehee? That's one I've had trouble with.

  • ||

    I don't care what dna is in my genes. If any one of my ancestors was different I wouldn't be me.

  • ||

    Paul, you'd probably want to ask that question to somebody who agrees with the position.

  • J||

    Joe: I don't think he understood you.

  • Episiarch||

    There are only two kinds of people in the world.
    The Irish and those that wish they were Irish.


    There's a third kind: humans.

  • ||

    I get that a lot, J.

  • Guy Montag||

    Episiarch,

    I second.

  • Patrick||

    There's a third kind: humans.

    Epi, you missed an opportunity to link to some 19th Century editorial cartoon showing the Irish as simians, like those negroes.

  • ||

  • ||

  • Patrick||

    Thanks, LowCarb

  • ||

    Epi, SugarFree

    You are practicing "hate commenting" which discriminates on the basis of race, religion, national origin, inflicting significant emotional distress on me and others. You will be hearing from my Jew lawyers.

  • ||

    Well, you want Js to subjugate the Ds, so you're not one to talk.

    COLONIALIST!

  • Episiarch||

    That anti-Italian one is great.

    Jsub, it is not possible to commit a "hate comment" against people everyone already hates.

  • ||

    Jsub, it is not possible to commit a "hate comment" against people everyone already hates.

    Oh really? (NSFW)

  • Guy Montag||

    it is not possible to commit a "hate comment" against people everyone already hates.

    It is not possible to commit a hate crime against the irish because hate crimes must be directed at humans.

  • ||

    When my Islamic friends encounter bigotry and intolerance they correctly chalk it up to ignorance and fear.

    We Irish correcly ascribe it to jealousy.

    ♪ Oh Lord it's hard to be humble
    when you're perfect in every way.
    I can't wait to look in the mirror
    cause I get better looking each day ♪

  • ||

    As a medical student, I am appalled that public health no longer means "prevent epidemics," and has come to include "peer into each individual's health decisions, even when they have no bearing on other people." Public health should have no role in non-infectious diseases. These people smear doctors' good names, because now lots of people think we're all public health nannies.
    If you come to me and say you want to eat more healthfully or stop smoking, I will try to use the best evidence-based tx to help you. I will never "help you stop" by legislating bans on products that I deem unhealthy.

  • ||

    Because we're too stupid to be trusted with that information. We might do something irresposible if we have too much information.

    You seem like the type to practice gene therapy in your basement. Not to correct a problem, but to make yourself a prototype of a new race of atomic supermen.

  • ||

    I agree with Joe's comment "Silver is obviously very attached to a philosophical framework about genetics and their influence on us, and there's nothing wrong with that, but it's a rookie mistake to assume that your political opponents' are your own mirror image."

    I'm a California resident, and I count myself fortunate that I obtained tests from deCODEme and 23andMe before the current brouhaha erupted. However, I doubt that companies like 23andMe and deCODEme were the initial target. The California investigation was sparked by consumer complaints, and I would bet those were directed at the nutrigenetic segment (which did not exactly fare well when subjected to a controlled experiment).

    That's not to argue that existing laws (which were designed for laboratories performing blood tests, pathology exams, etc.) are correct -- merely that Karen Nickel's motivations can't be ascribed to her stance on the role of genetics. She's applying the law to all companies equally. Here's the list:

    http://blog.wired.com/wiredscience/2008/06/california-reve.html

    Ron, I'm reading between the lines, but the family legend about Cherokee ancestry is not necessarily bogus. Your mitochondrial DNA comes from your straight maternal line, and you could still have Cherokee ancestry from a different direction. If you're basing your conclusion on comparisons of your autosomal DNA to various populations, any Cherokee ancestry might be so long ago that you haven't inherited any DNA from that side.

    One thing I enjoy about these new genomic scans is that they allow us to become "citizen scientists" and participate directly in new discoveries. One example: the Y chromosome follows the straight paternal line, which very conveniently happens to be the surname line in many cultures. Genetic genealogists who have taken tests at 23andMe and deCODEme have already revised the branching structure of the Y tree. I invite any readers who have obtained results to participate in this effort, described in my article "SNPs on Chips" in the Journal of Genetic Genealogy:

    http://www.jogg.info/41/Turner.pdf


    Ann Turner, M.D.
    co-author (with Megan Smolenyak) of "Trace Your Roots with DNA"

  • ||

    Because we're too stupid to be trusted with that information. We might do something irresposible if we have too much information.

    You seem like the type to practice gene therapy in your basement. Not to correct a problem, but to make yourself a prototype of a new race of atomic supermen.



    Yeah, So?

  • Hank||

    I had my own peptide done as well. It read:

    HANKAHANKOBURNINLOVE

    I don't think government busybodies should be allowed to take that away from me.

  • ||

    Yeah, So?

    Look, according to the tests, you carry several genetic traits common among supervillains. This, combined with your meddling in superscience is troubling to official law enforcement channels.

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