Xcode Life review – 7 facts you should know

Rating based on our Xcode Life review

7 facts from our Xcode Life review

Here is a snapshot of our Xcode Life review.

  1. Xcode Life location: India
  2. Products: DNA data upload for health reporting
  3. Reports: disease risks, nutrition, fitness; reports include names of analyzed genes but not genetic variants
  4. Result delivery: reports are delivered as PDF over email after ~ 10 hours
  5. Privacy: data not deleted per default, users must email the customer service
  6. Cost: $20-$99; no free analysis options
  7. Alternatives: Nebula Genomics (free options available; reporting based on latest scientific discoveries), Genetic Genie (free; for health information), Promethease ($12; for health information), GenoPalate ($69 for data upload; provides diet recommendations)

Xcode Life introduction

Xcode Life is a genomic analysis company that was founded in India by a former Monsanto scientist with a Ph.D. in bioinformatics from the University of Nebraska. The genomics company began developing its DNA analysis software back in 2010. It launched its first product in 2012 – a genetic test for wellness reporting. Today, Xcode Life no longer offers genetic testing. Instead, it instead offers genome analysis services for raw DNA data uploads. Their website accepts DNA data uploads and generates health and wellness reports. The biotechnology company does not have any free offerings, but is compatible with DNA data from most other genetic testing services. Read more in our Xcode Life review!

Xcode Life Health Reports

Xcode Life offers multiple DNA health report products. The following reports are available with the Xcode Life test:

  1. Gene Nutrition ($20). This report covers over 30 categories, including antioxidant needs, caffeine metabolism, and gluten sensitivity. Xcode Life uses this report to give users more personalized diet recommendations (e.g. avoid saturated fats).
  2. Gene Health ($20). This report has over 45 categories, including Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, autism, and depression. Xcode Life uses this report to give users more information about their genetic risks of health conditions.
  3. Gene Fitness ($20). This report has over 15 categories, including heart capacity, endurance, and exercise motivation. Xcode Life offers this report to give users more recommendations on how to change their fitness regimens.
  4. Gene Allergy ($20). This report has over 12 categories, including hay fever, lactose intolerance, misophonia, and grass allergy. 
  5. Gene Skin ($20). This report has over 20 categories, including sunspots, glycation protection, wrinkles, and B12 deficiency. 
  6. Breast Cancer ($40). This report has over 50 categories, including BRCA1, BRCA2 markers, breast, and ovarian cancer risk. This report focuses on BRCA gene status, a valuable biomarker for breast cancer.
  7. Carrier Status ($40). This report has over 275 categories on genetic diseases including Marfan Syndrome, Familial Periodic Fever, and Congenital Heart Disease.
  8. Methylation and MTHFR ($20). This report has over 50 categories about methylation cycle genes, including MTHFR, MTRR, CENPQ, MFN2. Many of these genes influence vitamin levels in the body.
  9. Traits and Personality ($20). This report has over 25 categories including empathy, leadership potential, agreeableness, and warrior personality. 
  10. Precision Medicine: This report includes over 250 drug reports to provide information on how fast (or slow) your body metabolizes certain medications. These include painkillers, cardiology drugs, and neuropsychiatry drugs.
  11. For one other report, ACMG, no information was provided on the Xcode Life website.

All Xcode Life reports are available within 24 hours.

Reports can also be purchased in the following bundles, often for a discounted price:

  1. Best Seller Pack ($49) includes nutrition, fitness, health, allergy, skin reports.
  2. Super Pack ($89) includes nutrition, fitness, health, allergy, skin, precision medicine, and methylation reports.
  3. Mega Pack ($99) includes all 9 individual report packages.

Xcode Life appears to have previously offered ancestral reporting services. However, this option no longer appears in their shop. 

Xcode Life cautions that their service is not qualified to provide direct medical advice.

How to use Xcode Life

Before we review Xcode Life reports, let’s take a look at how to get started. To access Xcode Life’s individual reports and bundles, you upload your raw data. The company doesn’t offer DNA testing but is instead designed to be compatible with raw genetic data from other providers including raw DNA file exports from Nebula Genomics and other companies. The following DNA raw data file formats are listed as compatible: 

23andMe, Family Tree DNA (FTNDA), Ancestry DNA, MyHeritage DNA, Living DNA, Genes for Good, Helix, Gene by Gene, We Gene, Gencove, VItagene, Invitae, Color, Affymetrix, Ambry Genetics, Others.

Getting started takes just a few minutes depending on the DNA data file size. Simply purchase an individual report or a bundle using a credit card or Paypal. Then upload one of the raw DNA file types (e.g. 23andMe, AncestryDNA, VCF, etc.) to the website.

Review of Xcode Life reports

This is the main part of our Xcode Life review where we will examine the provided reporting. Reports from Xcode Life are separated by category. Users can select which raw data analysis and report they want.

Using publicly available DNA raw data, we used Xcode Life to order a Gene Nutrition report. 

This report is advertised with “Same Day Delivery.” It took about 10 hours for the analysis to be completed. While this is “same day,” it is worth noting that competitors, such as Genetic Genie and Promethease, provide results within just a few minutes.

However, we found that the results are easier to understand compared to competing sites. After purchasing the Gene Nutrition report, we received a 26 page PDF via email.

The Xcode Life Gene Nutrition report included 36 different health traits. The reports for each trait start with an introductory guide. This guide starts giving users some fun-facts about their nutrition. In this specific report, Xcode Life shares that “53% of Mexican Americans are lactose intolerant.” The next page of the guide defines some key terms from the report, answering questions such as “What does the term ‘average’ mean in the report?” 

Next, the report goes into progressively more detail with a “Summary of Results” page. This summary begins with a pie-chart and key takeaways from the user’s genome analysis results. In this case, Xcode Life provides a diet plan. It also provides key-takeaways such as “Increased risk of being gluten sensitive.” 

The Diet Plan and Key takeaways from Xcode Life’s Gene Nutrition Report
The Diet Plan and key takeaways from the Gene Nutrition report.

Next, the Xcode Life report summarizes all the different traits that were tested. Each result includes a conclusion, such as “less likely to be lactose intolerant”.

Snapshot of the summary table in Xcode Life’s Gene Nutrition report
Snapshot of the summary table in Xcode Life’s Gene Nutrition report.

The Xcode Life report then provides more details about each category of the analysis. Here, users can also find the list of genes analyzed for each conclusion. The level of detail ends there, however. No further details about genetic variants or genotypes are provided. The recommendations are color-coded. 

The most detailed portion of the Xcode Life Gene Nutrition report.
The most detailed portion of the Xcode Life Gene Nutrition report.

Other nutrition health categories range from “Vitamin K needs” to “Tendency to prefer sweet foods”. Users can also learn about their “Weight gain tendency” and “Protein intake.” Xcode Life uses these assessments to craft the Diet Plan found on the first few pages of the report.

Review of Xcode Life privacy

Xcode Life collects user data as users browse and purchase reports. According to Xcode Life Privacy Policy, the company collects information including:

  1. Registration Information (name, email, etc)
  2. Self-reported demographic information
  3. User content (genetic raw data, testimonials, comments, etc.)
  4. Web Tracking Information

After receiving the Gene Nutrition report, we found it difficult to delete our uploaded data. Other sites make it easy with automatic deletion.

User DNA raw data files are not automatically deleted. Users must delete the information themselves. In order to delete personal information, users must send an email to the Xcode Life.

Xcode Life in the news

Xcode Life has largely remained out of the news. One 2018 story detailed the Indian company’s aspiration for a South Asian Genome Project for South Asian Ancestry. It often appears in financial news about this sector of the market.

Xcode Life reviews

Xcode Life Pros/Cons

Pros

  • Clear, easy to read reports.
  • Pick and choose individual health reports.
  • Reports delivered as a PDF and are easy to print out.

Cons

  • More expensive than other genome health reporting services.
  • The privacy policy is relatively weak. Requires emailing the company to delete personal information and uploaded data.
  • Health report takes several hours to generate (at minimum). This is much longer compared with competitors.
  • Not transparent about the science behind the results, in particular which genetic variants were analyzed.

Nebula Genomics

We finish our Xcode Life review by comparing it to Nebula Genomics and other DNA analysis services. Nebula Genomics stands out compared to other genomic health reporting services. We prioritize privacy above all else,  use the most advanced testing technology and offer the most comprehensive reporting. 

Your privacy is central

Nebula Genomics offers the first privacy-focused personal genomics service. Other genomics companies work with middlemen interested in purchasing your data. We do not. At Nebula Genomics, you have control over sharing your data and being compensated. 

Nebula Expand gives detailed reports

One major weak point in Xcode Life’s service is the lack of detail in their reports. The reports are easy to read and understand. But a need for clarity should not replace a need for transparency and detail. 

At Nebula, we help you learn even more about your genome. You can simply upload your data and get important details, like genetic variants, that you won’t find easily on sites like Xcode Life. Our expanded report uses statistical models to fill in the blanks left behind by others. 

Nebula believes that information is power. You should have access to the latest scientific studies related to your genome and health data. Nebula Expand gives you that access with the Nebula Research Library. Our mission is to make it easy for you to understand yourself, and your genome.

Whole genome analysis with Nebula Genomics

With our new 30x Whole-Genome Sequencing service, we give you the whole picture. It decodes through 100% of your DNA. And our reports and analyses go directly to your inbox! You get 10,000 times more data than with other services, which only read 0.1% of your genome! 

Here is how Nebula compares with other testing and reporting services.


23andMeAncestryDNANebula GenomicsXcode Life
Type of genetic testing Microarray-based genotypingMicroarray-based genotypingWhole Genome Sequencing (30x coverage) as well as DNA data uploadData uploads for health-oriented genome analysis
Level of detail HighHighVery highReports are comprehensive but lack scientific information, in particular genetic variants.
Ancestry analysisYesYesYes (Deep Ancestry Analysis).No
Privacy-FocusedNoNoYes (learn more)No
Cost$99, $199, or $499$99 or $149$0 – $299$20 – $99

Xcode Life vs AncestryDNA vs 23andMe vs Nebula GenomicsFor health information you should also check out the Promethease report and Genetic Genie. For diet recommendations, take a look at GenoPalate. Did you like out Xcode Life review? You can find more reviews here.

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