DiscoverScience VsDNA Kits: Can You Trust Them?
DNA Kits: Can You Trust Them?

DNA Kits: Can You Trust Them?

Update: 2019-04-1215


Millions of people are sending off their DNA to companies like and 23andme to find out where they come from, and what diseases they might get. But how much can you trust these DNA kits? To find out, we speak to anthropologist Prof. Jonathan Marks and geneticist Dr Adam Rutherford.

Check out the full transcript here:

Selected references: This academic paper on genetic ancestry’s white paper The genetics of Alzheimer DiseaseA perspective piece on genetic privacy

Credits: This episode was produced by Rose Rimler, with senior producer Kaitlyn Sawrey… with help from Wendy Zukerman, Meryl Horn and Michelle Dang. We’re edited by Blythe Terrell. Fact checking by Michelle Harris and Michelle Dang. Mix and sound design by Peter Leonard. Music by Peter Leonard, Frank Lopez, Emma Munger and Bobby Lord. Recording assistance from Cole del Charco, Madeline Taylor, Carmen Baskauf, Ian Cross and [Mareek] Marijke Peters. A huge thanks to everyone who spat in a tube for us, especially Toni Magyar and Alex Blumberg, and to all the researchers we got in touch with for this episode, including Dr. Wendy Roth, Dr Deborah Bolnick, Dr Celeste Karch, Professor Nancy Wexler, Dr. Robert Green, Dr Catharine Wang, and others. Thanks also to the teams at, 23andMe, and MyHeritage. Thanks to the Zukerman Family and Joseph Lavelle Wilson. 

Comments (2)

Jacquee Hunter

I did 23 and me ancestory and health a few years ago, so I was a bit nervous about what Science VS had to say about it. However 23 and me provided the exact same information. They explain what your results mean and how they got them. They state the results are not 100% accurate because have very little information in some regions. I personally dont mind because they continue to update your results as more information becomes available. As far as giving your dna to 3rd party companys, they are straight forward about it. Its not in fine print and they give you the option. The only reason they share your information is for genetic research. I have participated in several research studies with them. One was on Depression and Bipolar disorder. I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder at a young age. The study lasted a year and consisted of a questionnaire and cognitive test once a month. They even sent me a $20 Amazon gift card unexpectedly and linked me to any research article I contributed to. Many people see risked with DNA kits; but in my opinion, if big pharma, the government, etc wants my dna they could get it without 23 and me.

Jun 19th

Lilee Pee

"mystery of the devious defacator" 😂

Apr 16th
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DNA Kits: Can You Trust Them?

DNA Kits: Can You Trust Them?