Ran across this story on LivingDNA‘s blog, https://www.livingdna.com/blog/371-living-dna-october-update-us-laboratory-and-version-2-dna-chip.
New USA Laboratory
To support our growing US kit sales, the science team have been working over the past year to set up the processing of US customers DNA samples within the US. Having visited a number of potential laboratory partners across the US, we settled on an industry leader in March and began the process of working together. From the 29th of October, all customers in the US will have their samples tested within the US rather than Europe.
This is a great milestone and allows us to bring down the processing times for customer results.
Updated DNA Chip
We have received a lot of interest on our previous blog post around our updated DNA chip. We have aimed to answer some of the most frequently asked questions. In short, as one of our awesome existing Living DNA customers, you will continue to be supported and compatible with updates to our regional breakdowns and family matching. We’ve made sure that customers who test on the new chip and previous chip can participate in family networks and see each other in their match lists.
When the team at Living DNA first set out on the Living DNA journey, we carefully designed the first DNA chip, Orion, to provide a detailed motherline (mtDNA) and fatherline (YDNA) readout. Eighteen months later, the custom-designed content of the DNA chips we ordered was running out, so we had the opportunity to design our new chip (something that all major DNA companies do as part of their chip review process).
The first set of results from the version 2 chip, Sirius, have just started to be released (late October 2018). It’s important to say that all customers, regardless of the chip, will continue to get updates on their regional breakdown as promised to everyone that supported Living DNA when we first launched.
There are other questions answered in the blog post, but thought these were relevant:
Q. Should I retest on the Sirius chip / Will my sample be re-tested?
The DNA chips are designed to be compatible with each other. At this time, there are no Living DNA products that would benefit from an upgrade, so we don’t advise the need to upgrade. As with all DNA companies in the market, Living DNA is not able to re-run existing customers on the new chip but has worked hard to make sure the chips are highly compatible.
Q. What does this mean for GedMatch and other companies that I want to upload my data to?
GedMatch has already been working on making results from companies on the Orion chip type, the GSA, including 23andMe, work well for matching. The new Sirius chip will make the process simpler for them to do this, but please do allow the companies time to update their systems.
Good to see they have worked hard to make the new chip compatible with the earlier chip. It will be interesting to see the differences in the two chips. Hopefully, using a U.S. lab will see more sales as they haven’t done a sale in a while. It’s hard to compete when your competition regularly does sales and your company rarely does them. The fact they offer free limited transfers is a decent start, but they are late-comers to the DNA party so they need to step up their game.