23andMe, Pfizer Join Forces to Tackle Common Bowel Disorder

August 13, 2014

DNA testing company 23andMe has teamed up with Pfizer to study the underlying genetics behind inflammatory bowel disease, including factors associated with onset, progression and severity of IBD and response to treatments.

The companies hope to enroll 10,000 IBD sufferers in the U.S. in a study that is already underway. Patients can enroll on the 23andMe website, the company said, adding participation takes about 15 minutes, can be done at home and is anonymous.

Participants must have been diagnosed with Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis by a physician. They will receive 23andMe's Personal Genome Service, which includes an ancestry analysis and uninterpreted raw genetic data, free-of-charge. The company promises quarterly progress updates and answers to any questions participants may have throughout the study.

The CDC estimates that about 1.4 million people in the U.S. suffer from IBD. There is currently no cure for the chronic illness, whose cause is unknown.

The study’s website is www.23andMe.com/ibd. — Kellen Owings

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