On Tuesday John Halamka, the patron saint of geek doctors in this editor’s opinion, claimed that he shared the stage at a conference with most of the humans who have had their entire genome sequenced for the last time in history.
This morning, I’ll be on stage with all the humans who have had their genomes sequenced – James Watson (pictured above), Henry Louis Gates, Misha Angrist, John West, Jay Flatley, Greg Lucier, Seong-Jim Kim, Rosalynn Gill, George Church, and James Lupski.
The GET Conference 2010 marks the last chance in history to collect everyone with a personal genome sequence on the same stage to share their experiences and discuss the important ways in which personal genomes will affect all of our lives in the coming years.
Dr. Halmaka makes this claim based on his prediction of an upcoming geometric growth in the number of people getting their entire genome sequenced due to technology improvements driving down costs, making future gatherings of this sort very unlikely. Even this gathering was difficult, telling us via email that J. Craig Venter was unable to attend.
The outcome of this growth will be more articles like the one just published at Gizmodo by an anonymous author detailing his experiences comparing his results from 23andMe and Navigenics. We have covered both companies before, so we won’t go into the details, but the fact that the author of the Gizmodo piece chose to remain anonymous hints at the distrust some people still have in the face of Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) of 2008.
Geek Doctor: The Genomes, Environments and Traits Conference
Gizmodo: Looking Into My Genome Reveals Risks I’ll Never Unsee