Genetic Health Service Provider, Panacea, Launches to Make Whole Exome Sequencing Accessible

Whole exome sequencing, which has been inaccessible due to narrow medical guidelines and insurance denials, analyzes every currently-known human gene in order to identify markers of disease, allowing users to proactively plan for their health in the long term

Panacea, the one-stop-shop for genetic health services making potentially life-saving testing accessible for consumers, today announced its nationwide* commercial availability, without needing to visit a doctor or receive approval from insurance.

Panacea offers whole exome sequencing, a thorough analysis of every currently known human gene which can be used for identifying mutations that drive the development and progression of diseases. This allows individuals and their doctors to create a more targeted approach to help catch and treat a disease before it becomes problematic.

With almost one in two Americans at risk for cancer in their lifetime, about 20 million people would be able to catch cancer early or prevent it from occurring through comprehensive clinical-grade genetic tests. The problem is that current guidelines for doctors to order genetic tests, and for insurance to approve it, are missing about half of the people with genetic mutations. Even when insurance does cover testing, it can cost upwards of $10,000.

“I had my exome sequenced with Panacea, even though I was not a candidate for testing based on today’s medical guidelines. I found out my sister and I both had a mutation that increases our risk for ovarian cancer,” said Founder and CEO of Panacea, Dahlia Attia-King. “While ovarian cancer can be treated, many times it’s not found until it is in late stages, which is often fatal. Because of this sequencing, I was able to make proactive decisions about my healthcare that may end up saving my life. This further inspired me to make clinical-grade whole exome sequencing more accessible, so everyone can make informed decisions about their future.”

Panacea users receive a cheek swab and kit in the mail along with instructions for taking a clean sample. Then, 14-21 days after the sample arrives at the lab, users receive a report outlining known gene risks, many with medically available interventions. Additionally, the report highlights any changes detected in the 15 most common carrier genes, which may not impact the individual, but could impact their children. Users can also request their raw data at no extra cost.

Due to Panacea’s existing partnerships with CLIA and CAP certified genetic laboratories, trained genetic counselors and medical doctors, the company is able to offer services under $1,000. A critical part of the experience, users are provided a session with a genetic counselor to discuss results and whether any proactive healthcare decisions should be considered.

Many genetic tests common today which use “micro-array” genotyping which aren’t examining every gene. Because of this, they miss significant genetic factors that may inform an individuals long term health risks. For example, one testing company reviews only three of the most common breast cancer (BRCA) mutations found in the Ashkenazi Jewish population, ignoring the more than 1,000 other known harmful BRCA mutations.

“We only offer one test: whole exome sequencing, because it analyzes all of a user’s 20,000 genes,” said Dr. Hinco Gierman, a geneticist and Scientific Advisor at Panacea. “We share both the report on mutations well-known to science, as well as the raw data, so with just one test users can determine current risk factors and, if in the future new discoveries are made about any gene, they will already have that gene analyzed.”

For more information on Panacea or on whole exome sequencing, please visit

*Panacea is currently available in every state in the U.S., except for New York.