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Biotech Businesses Google The Internet

Google Invests In Genetic Indexing 74

Bibek Paudel point us to a BusinessWeek report on Google's interest in the cataloging and analyzing of people's DNA. Google has recently invested in DNA screening firms Navigenics and 23andMe, which test customers' DNA for characteristics such as ancestry and predisposition for certain diseases. The customers are then able to give the information to their doctors. This is not Google's first foray into the medical industry. "Google wants to plant an early stake in a potentially large new market around genetic data. 'We are interested in supporting companies and making investments in companies that [bolster] our mission statement, which is organizing the world's information and making it universally accessible and useful,' Google spokesman Andrew Pederson says. 'We felt it was important to get involved now, at the early stage, to better understand the information generated by this fast-moving field.'"
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Google Invests In Genetic Indexing

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  • by FooAtWFU ( 699187 ) on Sunday April 20, 2008 @01:31PM (#23135318) Homepage
    Your (small) mind may boggle, but really, a) it's not about AdSense, it's about being a major player in the medical industry (where you get paid by hospitals and insurance companies and what-have-you, not just advertisements), and b) even if it was, if you had (say) a propensity for heart disease, one could see ads for all those "heart healthy" oatmeal+etc things.
  • by ColdWetDog ( 752185 ) * on Sunday April 20, 2008 @01:44PM (#23135388) Homepage

    it's about being a major player in the medical industry

    I think this is it. The Next Big Thing in the Medical Industrial Complex (other than taking out all of the insurance company executives and shooting them) is going to be managing enormous amounts of data. The Industry has shown it can't do it: Insurance companies have a vested interest in NOT letting anyone else see what they are doing / what data they're finding. The government - Bush's weak pronouncements aside - won't do anything. The various private companies involved in Health Care computing are still too small and fragmented to get anything done on a major scale within the mess that is the current US Healthcare system.

    This means either medical information will remain balkanized for the foreseeable future (which isn't necessarily a bad thing), or somebody (ie. Google and / or Microsoft) is going to try to tie everything together. Of course, this won't fix the major issues in healthcare delivery and financing in the US but it's one piece of the puzzle.

"It ain't over until it's over." -- Casey Stengel