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New Medication Insight Reports for 23andMe+ Members On Depression Drug, Blood Thinner

By Diagnostics World News Staff

May 20, 2021 | 23andMe released two new medication insight reports last week as part of the company’s 23andMe+ Membership.

The two new reports provide medication insights on how a person’s CYP2C19 metabolizer profile may impact therapies with citalopram, a blood thinner, and clopidogrel, an antidepressant. About 22 million people in the US are prescribed citalopram; about 20 million have prescriptions for clopidogrel.

The CYP2C19 gene provides the instructions for making the CYP2C19 enzyme, which helps the liver process (or “metabolize”) medications including clopidogrel, citalopram, and over-the-counter treatments for acid reflux and ulcers, called proton pump inhibitors. 

Last year, in collaboration with UCSF, 23andMe assessed the frequencies and ethnic distribution of the three most common CYP2C19 alleles: *2, *3, and *17 (DOI: 10.1111/cts.12830). Drawing from the 23andMe database, they found for about 30% of company customers, clopidogrel will be “likely less effective.” For East Asian and South Asian customers, it’s more than half who’ll see that result. About 3% of customers have an “increased chance of side effects” result for citalopram. Among East Asians and South Asians, the percentage is between 10% and 12%.

23andMe received FDA clearance for these two medication insight reports in August 2020. The reports explicitly state that customers should consult their healthcare provider before making any changes to their medications but removes the need for confirmatory testing in a clinical setting for specific CYP2C19 outcomes.


Reporting Plus

The reports are delivered as part of the 23andMe+ service, an annual membership (currently $29/year) offered in addition to the 23andMe Health + Ancestry kit cost (currently $169). It is only available to Health + Ancestry Service customers on the current genotyping chip (V5), the company notes. 23andMe+ includes everything from the Health + Ancestry kit, plus at least ten annual reports about heart health, medication insight reports, migraine, and more.

The membership offers more than ten new reports and features throughout the calendar year giving members even deeper insights into their health. In March, the company added a heart disease and triglycerides report. The included pharmacogenetic results are among the most highly actionable genetic reports consumers can receive, the company says. They predict that 70% of 23andMe customers would receive a potentially actionable result from our pharmacogenetic reports.

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