Is Promethease safe? Learn about how they protect your DNA data!
Genetic testing is a growing trend as more and more people are curious about what they can learn from their DNA data. There are dozens of testing companies that offer DNA testing services with test results ranging from health reports, disease risk, family history, and personalized lifestyle and wellness recommendations. So much can be learned from genetic information, but is uploading this personal data safe? How do genetic testing companies protect this data? In this blog post, we will answer these questions and more about one of these companies, Promethease.
Here’s how Promethease handles your data
Privacy is a priority for Promethease, and they automatically delete your report after 45 days. They clearly state that they will never share or sell data to third party companies for research or marketing purposes.
When a user uploads their genetic information, they have the choice of creating a password-protected account or proceeding without creating an account.
If you choose not to create an account: your genome data is deleted immediately after the reports are generated, or after 24 hours if you do not complete the process to generate a report.
Having an account means: your raw genome data is stored on Promethease, but it allows you to re-generate your report with the most up-to-date scientific findings at any time. (You can permanently delete your genome data from their server whenever you like.)
A report costs $12 with most raw genome data files. They will email you a link to the results once it’s done processing, so you’ll always have access to the report. If you have raw data from multiple DNA testing companies, and you want to compare the results between them, you can upload an additional data set into the same report for $4 apiece. For example, I uploaded both my 23andMe and AncestryDNA data for $16 total.
If you’re amazed at how they strive to protect their users’ data, read on below to learn what kind of analysis they provide on raw DNA data!
Promethease provides health & disease-risk results based your raw data file
Promethease is a 3rd party tool that allows you to learn more about your genetic risks by uploading your raw DNA data. They do not provide testing kits or accept saliva samples for analysis, but they will accept your genetic data from a company that does collect and evaluate DNA samples. Originally Promethease only evaluated 23andMe data, but in the last several years they have expanded their services to accept data from several testing companies, including the following:
Genetic testing companies use single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in certain regions of the human genome to report on genetic variants associated with different traits. Promethease reports are built using a website called SNPedia. This Wikipedia-like page collects the findings on the effects of genetic variations on human genetics published by scientific publications. You can learn more about SNPedia by visiting their Reddit page here!
Your Promethease report will include health information and whether you are at high risk for certain medical conditions, such as breast cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. The whole report is long and can be dense with medical terms that are hard to interpret, however you can follow this guide to help you filter, sort and simplify your report. It may also be helpful to ask a geneticist or genetic counselor to help you understand your results.