Reliance to Venture into Genetic Mapping


Mukesh Ambani’s business is venturing into genetic mapping, hoping to make a healthcare trend spearheaded by disruptive US startups like 23andMe more accessible and widespread in India’s expanding consumer market.

The energy-to-ecommerce giant will roll out within weeks a thorough 12,000-rupee ($145) genome sequencing test, according to Ramesh Hariharan, chief executive officer of Strand Life Sciences Pvt., which has developed the product. Reliance Industries Ltd., led by Asia’s richest person, bought the Bengaluru-based company in 2021 and currently owns roughly 80% of it.

The genome test, which is around 86% less expensive than other options accessible locally, can disclose a person’s proclivity for cancer, cardiac and neuro-degenerative diseases, as well as pinpoint inherited genetic problems.

The endeavor is to deliver affordable personal gene-mapping to India’s 1.4 billion people since India is on pace to be the world’s most populous nation. It will possibly create a treasure trove of biological data that can improve drug development and illness prevention in the area. It also aligns with Ambani’s goals to expand more into the field of data.

Ancestry reports from companies such as the US-based 23andMe cost $99, but health plus ancestry reports cost $199. From Indian companies like MapmyGenome and Medgenome, whole genome sequencing for health red flags costs more than $1,000. There are Chinese companies that provide reports at a lower cost but do not cover the full range of testing.

Reliance intends to aggressively publicize the test on the MyJio app in the coming weeks.