Clinical OMICS

MAY-JUN 2019

Healthcare magazine for research scientists, labs, pathologists, hospitals, cancer centers, physicians and biopharma companies providing news articles, expert interviews and videos about molecular diagnostics in precision medicine

Issue link: https://clinicalomics.epubxp.com/i/1117801

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www.clinicalomics.com May/June 2019 Clinical OMICs 3 Publisher & CEO MARY ANN LIEBERT President MARIANNE RUSSELL Group Publisher SANDE GIACCONE Editor in Chief CHRIS ANDERSON EVP, Strategic Development KEVIN DAVIES Commercial Director BILL LEVINE Production Editor ROBERT M. REIS Senior Editor JULIANNA LEMIEUX, PH.D. Senior News Editor ALEX PHILIPPIDIS Chief Copy Editor STEVEN HERNACKI Contributing Editors CHRISTINA BENNETT, CAMILLE MOJICA REY, PH.D. Art Director JAMES LAMBO Director, Advertising VICTORIA SHKRELI Online Product Manager SEAN HELMES Associate Director of Brand Marketing JENNIFER GATTI Online Editorial Supervisor KATHERINE VUKSANAJ Design & Layout DIANNE PAULET, BYRON DUQUE Advertising Sales Manager REBECCA SHUMBATA US East (rshumbata@clinicalOMICs.com/ 617-435-4786) Advertising Sales Manager GREG VALERO US West & Canada (gvalero@clinicalOMICs.com / 914-740-2271) Advertising Sales Manager GARY KING UK & Europe (gking@clinicalOMICs.com / +44 (0) 203 0020070) List Sales SCOTT PERILLO (sperillo@ClinicalOMICs.com / 914-740-2178) Sales Administrator FALLON MURPHY Advertising Material WANDA SANCHEZ (wsanchez@liebertpub.com) Clinical OMICs Advisory Board DANIEL H. FARKAS, PH.D., HCLD Chief Clinical Laboratory Officer, Celmatix JEFFREY GIBBS, J.D. Director, Hyman, Phelps, and McNamara PETER HARRSCH, PH.D. Executive Clinical/Forensic Specialist, Waters Corp. ROGER KLEIN, M.D., J.D. Principal, Roger D. Klein, MD JD Consulting JASON PARK, M.D., PH.D. Assistant Professor, Dept. of Pathology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center STEPHEN C. PEIPER, M.D. Professor & Chair, Dept. of Pathology, Anatomy & Cell Biology, Thomas Jefferson University AMIT RASTOGI Senior Vice President, Strategy, Growth, and Innovation, Inova DAVID SMITH, PH.D. Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, Mayo Clinic KIMBERLY STRONG, PH.D. Director, Program in Genomics and Ethics, Medical College of Wisconsin LARRY WORDEN Principal, IVD Logix The views, opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations set forth in any article in Clinical OMICs are solely those of the authors of those articles and do not necessarily reflect the views, policy, or position of Clinical OMICs, its Publisher, or its editorial staff and should not be attributed to any of them. All advertise- ments are subject to review by the Publisher. The acceptance of advertisements does not constitute an endorsement of the product or service advertised. Clinical OMICs (ISSN-2334-1351) is published online bimonthly by GEN Publishing, 140 Huguenot St., 3rd Floor, New Rochelle, NY 10801-5215. For subscription information go to: www.clinicalomics.com Copyright © 2018 by GEN Publishing, New Rochelle, NY F our years after launching with great fanfare and having dipped into the venture capital market to the tune of more than $53 million, Seattle-based wellness start-up Arivale abruptly closed its doors. The basic premise behind the company—and of others hoping to mine the perceived market for well- ness products and services—is that people would be willing to pay hefty sums to understand how their individual molecular makeup influences their health. The brainchild of genomics and precision medicine visionary Leroy Hood, and venture capitalist and compet- itive triathlete Clayton Lewis, it's possible both were blinded by their own knowledge of the potential benefits of being able to understand one's own biology and then act on it to stave off aging and disease. It's initial pricing was perhaps another culprit. With its flagship offering priced at $3,500 a year (it later added a $99 per month option with fewer services) the company very likely priced itself out of large segment of the adult population. Over its four years in business, the company only attracted around 5,000 cus- tomers for its services, according to published reports. And not all of those cus- tomers were shelling out for the premium offering. That's hardly enough business to support the 120 employees the company had when it closed in late April. But Arivale is not the only company that has struggled looking to find the right pricing and cost structure to capture customers looking for a com- prehensive view of their biology to inform wellness decisions. San Diego- based Human Longevity, founded by genomic pioneer and lightning rod scientist Craig Venter, and backed by funding from Celgene and Illumina, has struggled as it looks to "build the world's most comprehensive data- base on human genotypes and phenotypes, and then subject it to machine learning so that it can help develop new ways to fight diseases associated with aging." But it's service, Health Nucleus X, also came with the stagger- ing price tag of $7,500. Human Longevity's struggles are only highlighted by the soap opera nature and the revolving door in the company's C-suite that eventually saw Venter himself assume the role of CEO and then shortly thereafter leave the company for the com- fort of the eponymous J. Craig Venter Institute. So what is going on here? Well, it's very likely that the wellness concepts of Hood and Venter—two people widely considered as visionary—are simply too far ahead of the curve when it comes to the amount of money people are willing to invest in personal wellness. Certainly, the signs of individuals wanting to have this information are there, from the success of wearable fitness trackers, to the willingness of people to use a service like 23andMe to learn more about their genome. But it's a pretty big leap from a $99 genomic test or a $69 Fitbit to a service costing thousands of dollars a year. So it seems that until the costs can be dras- tically reduced, comprehensive molecular profiling to inform personal wellness will have to wait. FROM THE EDITOR Chris Anderson Editor in Chief Arrivederci Arivale

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