23andMe Gets Grant, Gene Risks Found for Parkinson’s, Researchers ID Four Kinds of Stomach Cancer

By Rhonda Reinhart

The 23andMe lab. Courtesy of 23andMe

23andMe receives $1.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health: The NIH funding will support further development of 23andMe’s database and research engine for genetic discovery, allowing the consumer genetic testing company to uncover new associations between patient health and gene variants. “This grant from the NIH recognizes the ability of 23andMe to create a unique, web-based platform that engages consumers and enables researchers from around the world to make genetic discoveries,” says Anne Wojcicki, co-founder and CEO of 23andMe.

Scientists discover six new genetic risk variants for Parkinson’s disease: Using data from more than 18,000 patients, researchers at the National Institutes of Health have found six new genetic risk factors for Parkinson’s, a degenerative disorder that causes problems with movement. The scientists also found that in some cases, the more variants a person has, the greater the risk of developing the disease.

Four subtypes of gastric cancer identified: Scientists at The Cancer Genome Atlas Network have discovered that stomach cancers fall into four subtypes, a development that will help researchers explore new therapies based on patients’ specific genomic profiles. An estimated 723,000 people die of gastric cancers each year.