Break­ing the

Less than $100. de­code

Finweek English Edition - - TECHNOLOGY -

Imag­ine go­ing to the doc­tor and re­ceiv­ing a unique medicine that had been cre­ated specif­i­cally for your body, with all of its ge­netic unique­ness. The doc­tor would also im­me­di­ately know what to look for in di­ag­nos­ing you by rul­ing out things you don’t have a ten­dency to­ward and fo­cus­ing on the clear risks pre­sented by your DNA. This is the age of in­di­vid­ual medicine, and a break­through made this year has paved the way for it.

In 2010 I met a team at IBM’s Thomas J Wat­son Re­search Cen­ter that was work­ing on a DNA tran­sis­tor to map out an in­di­vid­ual hu­man genome in less than two hours and at a frac­tion of the cost that would other­wise be re­quired. It was an am­bi­tious goal and sim­i­larly shared by a hand­ful of sim­i­lar projects un­der­way at the time. This year at the Euro­pean So­ci­ety of Hu­man Ge­net­ics con­fer­ence in Mi­lan, a Dutch com­pany called Ge­nal­ice showed off its tech­nol­ogy that can de­code the DNA data of an en­tire hu­man genome with 40 times depth within 30 min­utes.

Ge­nal­ice calls it­self a ‘ bio­med­i­cal big data com­pany’ and has for­malised

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