ichrogene: A Korean startup that offers free DNA trait analysis for better healthcare

Genetic testing and analysis play a significant role in managing healthcare. A well-profiled DNA test result analysis can help doctors, specialists and individuals decide the course of medical action much in advance and detect any future genetic issues. Also, in times of the COVID-19 pandemic, the medical sector emphasizes genetic testing and analysis for understanding the various outcomes of the disease.

Korean startup ichrogene helps people get their genetic analysis done through a free DNA test result analysis service iSearchme. The service, also available in the USA, uses raw DNA data from platforms like 23andMe, MyHeritage, AncestryDNA, FamilyTreeDNA, LivingDNA, or ichrogene (in Korea only) in order to generate a detailed genetic report.

Easy to use service, compatible with most DNA data sites

ichrogene’s service can be easily availed for free by simply uploading the DNA test results on the iSearchme platform. The report takes less than 30 minutes to process, and results can be accessed on their site with bookmarked traits and categories. Different services of ichrogene can be used through one-time DNA sampling and continuous file uploading. The service can take data from multiple DNA services to generate the reports.

ichrogene results offer more than 60 different trait categories that include nutrition, skin, obesity, lifestyle risk factors. In addition to the existing traits, new traits are added every week, and the analysis is updated automatically.

ichrogene provides an analysis of users’ genetic predispositions based on current scientific research and analysis from experienced bio information and genetics researchers. ichrogene also assures of data safety of the genetic reports. The gene analysis performed by ichrogene is offered free. The only cost involved is acquiring the DNA genome file from another DNA service. In Korea, ichrogene offers  DNA testing as well at a nominal charge.

ichrogene DNA test results describe the level of risk and genotype prevalence for the list of 60 traits and do not provide health recommendations. However, the results can help your genetic counselor or healthcare provider make decisions to improve your health.

New investment and projects 

ichrogene was founded in 2017 by its CEO, Youngah Shin, who holds a Ph.D. in bioinformatics and genomics. The startup had received $944,000 in funding from venture capitalists, including a startup accelerator, Naver, in 2020. In May 2021, the company has attracted 3 billion won or $2.6 million worth of Series A investment from Insight Equity Partners.

Youngah Shin, CEO of Ichrogene said in a media statement, “Based on the new investment; we will spur research and development further to enhance Ichrogene’s genome big data analysis capabilities. We will focus on securing data and technology.” Kang-ho Jang, Director of Insight Equity Partners, who led the investment, said, “Gene analysis is a central field of digital healthcare that is rapidly emerging in the era of aging and Corona 19.”

ichrogene is currently developing a solution that predicts chronic diseases and cancer by analyzing big data of more than 600,000 genes. It is characterized by full scan and analysis of individual genetic information, and the connection service can be continuously used with a single scan.

Recently, it signed an MOU with Gwangju City and has been selected as the leading company for the AI ​​healthcare platform construction project promoted by Gwangju City. This is a part of a citizen-led healthcare MyData project worth 2.5 billion won or $2.2 million, and the core is to establish an AI healthcare data platform such as genetic data and provide personalized healthcare services by linking life information.

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