You already trust Google to store your emails on Gmail, your daily schedule on Calendar, and your personal files on Drive. Might as well trust it with your genetic information, right? Now, you can do just that with Google Genomics, the search giant’s effort at creating a centralized database for human DNA.
While databases of human genomes already exist, Google wants the new service to be the primary destination for hospitals, drug firms, and research groups who are conducting studies on diseases and experimenting on potential cures. Few companies have the kind of computing power and vast infrastructure to support the massive amount of content such a database will require, after all, with a single human genome taking up around 100 gigabytes of space.
Aside from storing genome information, Google Genomics will allow researchers to process and compare all that genomic data, with built-in tools and an API for integrating into custom applications. Basically, it will give researchers the ability to perform virtual experiments and DNA searches at a massive scale, hopefully, leading to bigger breakthroughs in medical and health research. Forget the internet of things, this is the internet of DNA and it’s the kind of thing that can lead to personalized healthcare like never before.
Google Genomics is currently offering the service to various facilities that use genomic data, offering to host their databases for $25 per genome annually. The National Cancer Institute is already said to be in the process of moving its 2.6-petabyte Cancer Genome Atlas into the service.