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GenePlaza – things you should know before using app store for genetics

What is GenePlaza?

GenePlaze is like an App store, but for genetic Apps (tests). It is a European company for both third-party raw DNA analysis and genetic testing. Whether you have already tested your DNA or are still thinking about it, GenePlaza lets you choose what and how much genetic data you want.

To use GenePlaza, you can simply upload raw DNA from genetic testing companies like:

  • 23andme
  • Ancestry DNA
  • Gencove
  • FamilyTreeDNA
  • MyHeritage

You could also order a GenePlaza kit directly and get bonus credits to get add-on Apps later for free. The laboratory that runs your sample is Gencove Inc.

What does GenePlaza offer?

GenePlaza has developed a wide range of Apps based on published scientific studies. Each App looks at different things in your DNA and tells you slightly different stories. Below is a screenshot of some of the Apps currently available on GenePlaza. As more genetic studies come out each day, there are always exciting new Apps being developed! 

GenePlaza apps

So what kind of questions can you ask?

Ancestry related apps

Ancestry

Where (general geographic regions) did your ancestors live in the past?

The K35 calculator

How did your genetics relate to ancient bronze and iron age cultures?

K29 Admixture Calculator

How did your genetics relate to various worldwide populations based on shared allele frequencies?

GenePlaza Ethnicity Calculator

How does your ethnicity look like on a 3D map?

Health-related apps

Depression App

What is your genetic risk to depression compared to the average person?

My Weight

Can your genes determine your weight?

Sleep Zzzz

Do you fall asleep easily according to your genes?

Intelligence App

How would your IQ compare to other users based on genetics?

Coffee Metabolism

How quickly do your genetics make you metabolize coffee?

Is GenePlaza free?

Although GenePlaze does cost money, you can get some free credits when you upload your DNA or purchase a kit. You can also catch a sale buying around the DNA Day (First week of May). 

How to use GenePlaza?

One of the great things about GenePlaza is the friendly user experience. There are guidelines on how to purchase and use one their DNA collection kits, and how to upload DNA files from elsewhere.

  1. Create a free account
  2. Upload raw DNA data or purchase a DNA collection kit
  3. Purchase an App that you find interesting
  4. Your results will be calculated and when they are ready, you will be notified by email.

If you are a FamilyTree DNA or MyHeritage user, check out this guide

Peek at sample GenePlaza results

Before you buy any App, you have the chance to preview sample reports. All of the Apps have visually appealing designs and come with down-to-earth explanations. Some of the Apps are also interactive so that you can click on things and explore more.

For example, the Ancestry report has a very nice visual appeal and is interactive. That being said, the result is very similar to DNA.Land, another (free) third-party DNA analysis website. 

GenePlaza Intelligence App

The GenePlaza Intelligence App is an interesting one. Most other testing companies avoid interpretations on intelligence for very good reasons. But GenePlaza is not scared of putting you on a population curve. 

The GenePlaza IQ App is based on data from the big 2017 study published on Nature Genetics. The App shows you an IQ score you would have had if you were in the same study. Of course, the results come with a disclaimer saying that don’t take it too personally, because they predict only about 5 points of IQ. 

Many people may pitch in the dollars because they are curious, but even the founder himself said “I hope people are not getting it thinking that this is a true measure of their intelligence.”

To read more about the Intelligence App, check out this blog.

GenePlaza reviews

There aren’t many user discussions about GenePlaza online yet, maybe because the company is still very young. From our experience and limited GenePlaza reviews, here are some Pros and Cons:

Pros 

  • Easy to use and explains everything in plain English, not technical
  • Visually Appealing results and interface
  • A wide range of interesting Apps to choose from

Cons

  • The health App trait predictions results are not very accurate
  • Some results are more just for fun (such as the IQ test)
  • Some Apps are not worth the price and offered for free elsewhere (Ancestry report at DNA.Land)

Is GenePlaza safe?

GenePlaza seems to take privacy very seriously. It is one of the first things that mentioned on their website. ‘Data privacy’ is listed as one of the core values. The company also pledges to never display your identity or monetize your DNA data.

GenePlaza’s website also states that servers are equipped with latest security programs to protect your data from hackers – sounds reassuring. 

Who runs GenePlaza?

Some users ask the question “Is GenePlaza legit?” because the company is founded relatively recently in 2017. 

The founders of GenePlaza Alain Coletta and Robin Duquére are both very experienced in the DNA analysis field. The CEO, Coletta, has a Ph.D. degree in bioinformatics. Duquére also spent many years building another genomic analysis company. 

Conclusion

In conclusion, GenePlaza distinguishes itself from other more technical sites with its user experience, fun Apps and intuitive explanations. Since you are the one to decide which Apps to buy, you decide which information you would like to get for yourself. Each App usually costs only a couple dollars, but it can build up quickly if you are planning to get a dozen. Overall, GenePlaza seems to be a growing genetic App store to watch out for new functions. But when you get health or ancestry reports from GenePlaza or any other testing sites, be mindful that our these things are also affected by environmental and social factors. Do not take everything they say as facts!