Advances in DNA sequencing technology have made it cheaper and easier than ever before, which has led to a flurry of genetic testing start-ups.
More than 80, according to AngelList. In order to bring the price down even more, companies such as Color Genomics and Counsyl are now building their own sequencing labs and analytics software from scratch, using robots and machine learning to optimize operations.
The San Francisco Bay Area companies both test for inherited cancer risk, like breast, ovarian and colon cancer, and Counsyl also offers a test for family planning and pregnancy.
"Historically, tests like this used to cost over $4,000. The Color test launched at $250," said Othman Laraki, the president and co-founder of Color Genomics, who previously worked at Google and Twitter. He said that reducing manual labor with automation was the main reason they have been able to keep the price so affordable.