By Lisa Jenkins
For those of you thinking of using 23andMe to get snp data related to MTHFR mutations or ANY other genetic issues -
Please note – I recently found out that 23andMe does NOT validate ANY information reported in the “raw data file” unless it is also something they use to pull one of THEIR “health reports.”
When 23andMe had their test kits on sale last year, I contacted them regarding testing for snp's associated with MTHFR (for those not yet familiar with those terms, those are genetic single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase, an enzyme encoded by the MTHFR genes). My question to 23andMe at its' core was pretty simple – to find out if they still include basic MTHFR snp's in their raw data file, since they are now testing on the newer V5 data chip. The run-around I got on this simple question was more than a little baffling. Yes, I totally get that ALL 23andMe products are for our own amusement only and are not intended to be used to diagnose, cure, or treat any illness. I already understand the legalities there and know also that there can occasionally be inaccuracies in any testing process. I already knew that 23andMe doesn't pull a specific “MTHFR” data report and never did. What I did NOT know was how far this company goes just to make sure we know they find MTHFR mutations to be pretty much beneath the need for inquiry altogether. In fact, after basically telling me in their first response that they have concluded (per their literature review) that it's not related to a lot of things people “think it is,” in their second response they straight told me that if MTHFR is my primary concern they couldn't recommend use of their product . . INSTEAD of simply telling me whether or not they still test for those snp's!!
23andMe has actually dropped some 700 snp's from their V5 chip that were previously tested on V4. I have NO idea what all of those snp's were – COMT, MTRR, CBS etc. and etc. . . So if you were thinking of getting the 23andMe for the raw data file to upload to Nutrahacker, LiveWello, etc. and possibly find out more about your genetic code in relation to detox, etc. you may want to go with a different product or push your health provider to test.