Promethease review – Insightful but too complicated?

Rating based on our Promethease review

7 facts from our Promethease review

  1. Promethease location: Promethease was recently acquired by MyHeritage which is located in Israel
  2. Products: DNA data upload for health reporting
  3. Reports: very detailed reports on disease risks, but sometimes difficult to understand
  4. Result delivery: through the Promethease website
  5. Privacy: data deleted automatically after 45 days
  6. Cost: $12
  7. Alternatives: Nebula Genomics (free DNA upload and reporting based on latest scientific discoveries), Genetic Genie (free; for health information)

Introduction

Promethease is a website used for genome health reporting. The site was launched in 2008 and is based on the SNPedia wiki. Both websites were acquired in 2019 by the genealogy platform MyHeritage. Promethease and SNPedia have become one of the most widely used sites for DNA health reporting.

Promethease uses the SNPedia’s extensive research library to inform users of their genetic variants. The SNPedia library contains health information on over 100,000 gene variants. Each entry in the SNPedia library is selected based on actual results from peer-reviewed scientific research. Read more in our Promethease review!

Overview

Let’s start the Promethease review with an overview of the service. Promethease is a DNA data analysis service that does not offer any DNA testing. The focus of Promethease is entirely on analyzing genetic markers in uploaded raw DNA data and providing detailed health reports. It does not offer any DNA ancestry or family tree maker services.

It is designed to be compatible with raw data from other genetic testing providers. The Promethease test is compatible with raw DNA data exports from Nebula Genomics, 23andMe, AncestryDNA, and other DNA testing companies.

The Promethease flagship product is its DNA health report. This report is based on genetic data from academic research aggregated on SNPedia.com — a database of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs).

The Promethease health report is presented as a list of relationships between users’ gene variants and health traits. Each item carries a brief description, details about biology, and an assessment of the medical significance. 

Promethease is very transparent about the sources of its data. With just a few clicks, users can go from their results to the scientific studies behind those results.

Each report costs $12 and is generated in under 15 minutes. Does Promethease offer discounts? You can upload multiple DNA raw data files at once. The first upload costs $12 but simultaneous additional files only cost only $4. 

Getting started with Promethease

Before we review Promethease reporting, let’s take a look at how to get started using the service. The Promethease website first greets users with its terms and conditions. Users must agree to conditions, such as: 

“I accept the risk of learning that I may be at high risk for a debilitating disease”

And “I am aware that I am strongly encouraged to discuss my Promethease report with a doctor”

After accepting the terms, users are asked to watch a tutorial video from 2016.

Getting started takes just a few minutes depending on the file size. Simply upload your raw DNA data (e.g. 23andMe, AncestryDNA, VCF, etc.). Then purchase the report, and enter your contact information. 

Promethease generates the report and you will receive a link to it in an email.

How to use Promethease

In this part of our Promethease review, we will examine the provided reporting. Promethease offers sample reports for customers to review before uploading their data and buying reports. The report results are made available through a web browser. Sections of the reports can also be downloaded to PDFs or exported to Excel spreadsheets. 

Upon opening their results, users find a list of gene variants from their uploaded DNA file that Promethease analyzed.

Sample report identifying an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. From Promethease review.
Figure 1. Sample Promethease report identifying an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Promethease reports are highly customizable. Users can search for specific medical conditions like AIDS or prostate cancer. Users can also filter by the number of academic references and the strength of the evidence. This is especially useful because many other DNA analysis services provide reports without explaining how they were produced.

Users can also search by keywords for specific genes, body parts, or conditions. For example, you can search for variants in the MTHFR gene or BRCA1 gene. You can also search for keywords like eyes or cancer. 

Users can search reports by gene names.
Figure 2. Users can search Promethease reports by gene names.

Users can also search Promethease reports by organ names. From Promethease review.
Figure 3. Users can also search Promethease reports by organ names.

Promethease reports can also be searched by disease names.
Figure 4. Promethease reports can also be searched by disease names.

Each report result is assigned a repute that can be “good”, “bad”, or “not set.” This indicates whether the user’s DNA has a positive or negative impact on health. For example, whether an analyzed SNP decreases or increases the risk of a medical condition. 

The report also gives each gene variant a score or “magnitude.” Magnitudes are subjective measures of how interesting the gene variant is. They indicate how important it is for the user to pay attention to the result. 

The magnitude scale tells you how important your DNA analysis results are. From Promethease review.
Figure 5. Result magnitudes indicate the potential impact of discovered genetic variants on health. 

For example, the sample report in Figure 1 shows a 2-times greater risk of Alzheimer’s with a magnitude of 3.5. That would be a BAD repute, meaning that the user has an SNP that increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. The magnitude of 3.5 suggests that the risk increase is quite significant. Promethease suggests to pay attention and possibly reach out to a medical professional.

Different DNA analysis results in a Promethease report.
Figure 6. Promethease generates pie charts that tell the user the ratio of “good”, “bad”, and “not set” DNA health results. 

Users can also filter their Promethease DNA analysis reports data by category. The categories are broken up into the three subsets:

  1. Topics, such as Height, Gout, and Ashkenazi Jews
  2. Medical Conditions, such as Alcoholism, Insomnia, and Kidney Stones
  3. Clinvar Diseases, such as Cleft Chin, Tay-Sachs Disease, and Familial Mediterranean Fever.

All reports include gene names and SNP IDs. If users click on them, they are taken to the SNPedia page. Here users can review peer-reviewed research to learn more about each gene, variant, and medical condition.

Because the SNPedia database is so comprehensive, Promethease suggests going over results with your physician, genetic counselor or another medical professional. In particular, if you are concerned about a particular result. 

Review of Promethease Privacy

Promethease’s privacy policy was updated after the site was acquired by MyHeritage.

Is Promethease safe? User DNA raw data files are deleted automatically after 45 days. Creating an account with Promethease is optional. If users do not create an account, their DNA data files are deleted after 24 hours.

Will Promethease disclose your personal data to third parties? The site says it may share users’ information to third parties, such as payment processors, that help Promethease offer its services. It may also transfer user data in the event of another company acquisition, such as happened during the MyHeritage acquisition.

Promethease In the News

Promethease Reviews

Promethease Pros/Cons

Pros

  • Full of detailed health information
  • Less expensive than most other health reporting services
  • One single detailed health report generated quickly
  • Transparent about scientific rigor. Can filter out weakly supported results.

Cons

  • User interface not easy to understand
  • Unregulated access to DNA health information can be misconstrued

Nebula Genomics

We finish our Promethease review by comparing Promethease with Nebula Genomics and other DNA testing and analysis sites. Nebula Genomics stands out compared to other genomic health reporting services. We prioritize privacy above all else. We also offer whole genome sequencing, the most advanced genetic test. It enables us to provide the most comprehensive reporting that is updated every week based on the latest research. 

Nebula Expand

Do you have DNA test results from other testing sites like Ancestry or 23andMe results? You can upload that data to Nebula for free. We will expand your DNA data and give you access to a detailed report

How do we accomplish detailed reporting on genetic conditions? Our expanded reports are generated statistical models to fill in the blanks left behind by typical DNA genotyping tests. A genetic testing company like Promethease can provide information on some variants, but our expanded reports can analyze almost all variants. 

We live in a time of a genomic revolution that is about to change our lives. We empower our users to stay informed about cutting-edge research and learn how it affects them. We curate the latest research, personalize it based on your genomic data, and provide detailed reports through the Nebula Research Library

Whole-Genome Sequencing

We also go beyond DNA data uploads. With our new 30x Whole-Genome Sequencing service, we can determine 100% of your DNA. With us, you get 10,000 times more data than with other services that, in contrast, only read 0.1% of your genome! 

Here is how Nebula compares with other DNA testing companies.


23andMeAncestryNebula GenomicsPromethease
Type of Genome Reporting ServiceMicroarray-based genotyping & report Microarray-based genotyping & reportWhole-Genome Sequencing (30x coverage)Health-oriented genome analysis
Produced data~ 600,000 positions in the genome~ 700,000 positions in the genome~ 3,000,000,000 positions in the genomeN/A
Compatible with other sitesCan export data and use it elsewhere.Can export data and use it elsewhere.Can export data and use elsewhere or upload data from 23andMe/AncestryDNA to fill in gaps and learn more.Accepts all typical DNA testing data (e.g. 23andMe, AncestryDNA and Nebula Genomics raw data)
Affiliated CompaniesYesYesYes (Deep Ancestry Analysis)Owned by MyHeritage
Target CustomerConsumers who are interested in a limited at-home genetic test.Consumers who are interested in a limited at-home genetic test.Consumers who are interested in complete DNA testing and advanced reporting.Consumers who are interested in detailed health reports with references.
User interfaceHighly ratedHighly RatedHighly RatedLess easy to understand than competitors.
Privacy PrioritizedNoNoYes (learn more)No
Cost$99, $199, or $499$99 or $149$0 – $299$12+

Promethease vs Ancestry vs 23andMe vs Nebula Genomics

Other alternatives to Promethease that you should consider are Genetic Genie and Xcode Life. Did you like our Promethease review? You can read more reviews here!

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