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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Warren's Ancestors Didn't Come From Margaritaville

The new genetic genealogy company everyone's talking about is 23andMe—mostly because one of its founders, Anne Wojcicki, is married to Google founder Sergey Brin. The company's first order of business was to set up a website and get Warren Buffett and Jimmy Buffett to spit in cups.

About two months ago Warren and Jimmy submitted DNA to 23andMe. (Warren "just kept spitting into a little receptacle, and then we FedExed it. Not very elegant," says his assistant. Jimmy did the same.)
When the results came back a month later, Wojcicki - a 33-year-old Yale grad and former health-care industry analyst - and her associate Joanna Mountain called Warren from 23andMe's offices, just half a mile from Google's Mountain View, Calif., campus, and broke the news that he need not include Jimmy in his will. In fact, "I'm as closely related to you as Jimmy is," said Mountain, the head of 23andMe's ancestry product line and a former professor of anthropological genetics at Stanford. [Link]
I wonder if company executives will personally deliver the news to everyone who sends in a DNA sample.

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