Dante Labs was founded in 2016 and since then they have grown by leaps and bounds in the direct-to-consumer sector of genetic testing.
Like any growing company, they have faced challenges, particularly with the quality of their sequencing, their service delivery, and the quality of their sequencing. Despite those challenges, Dante Labs continues to move forward with its whole genome sequencing and interpretation services.
Dante Labs is an international genomics company that offers a 30X whole-genome sequencing service. While their Sequencing Center is based in Europe, specifically L’Aquila (AQ) Italy, they also have an office in the United States in New York.
The CEO, Andrea Riposati, is often seen in the media sharing general information about genetic testing along with Dante Labs’ whole genome sequencing test capabilities.
Dante Labs’ mission is to provide access to whole-genome sequencing to as many consumers as possible worldwide. To date, they have served customers from more than 80 countries with the power of the whole genome, including insights on predispositions for rare diseases, pharmacogenomics, and personalized medicine.
As part of Dante Labs’ whole-genome sequencing service, they sell DNA collection kits on their website at us.dantelabs.com or dantelabs.com. Upon ordering, customers follow the instructions inside of the collection kit to obtain a saliva sample by spitting saliva into a test tube. This is different from what other testing companies request (a cheek swab).
In 2019, Dante Labs began installing Illumina next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology at their laboratory in Italy. This technological advancement along with lab automation enables whole-genome sequencing (WGS) and whole-exome sequencing (WES) to be offered to individuals worldwide.
Dante Labs doesn’t use proprietary bioinformatics analysis of raw data and instead the raw genome sequencing data is processed using Amazon’s AWS Cloud and Illumina’s DRAGEN software.
Dante also offers genetic reports based on genome data so customers can learn about their predisposition to diseases, including hereditary cancers, heart disease, diabetes, and many others. Additional reports, which have to be purchased separately, are also available, such as reports that provide information about how well the body metabolizes medications and how to improve diet and wellness.
Dante’s service is different from 23andMe, Ancestry.com, and MyHeritage because these companies use a genetic testing technology called ‘genotyping’ while Dante uses more advanced whole-genome sequencing. Other companies that also offer whole-genome sequencing that can be ordered online are Sequencing.com and Full Genomes.
Our Dante Labs Review provides additional information about their service.
While Dante Labs does perform whole-genome sequencing and has delivered whole genomes to many customers, the question of whether Dante Labs is legitimate and reputable is a bit complex.
Dante Labs is certainly well-known and they do provide genome sequencing services but there are a growing number of customer complaints throughout social media and review sites, such as the Better Business Bureau and Amazon, that they’ve encountered serious problems.
For example, a frequent complaint is that customers purchase Dante’s genome sequencing service, which is usually priced very low, such as during their Black Friday sales, with the expectation of receiving results within the eight-week timeframe indicated on Dante’s site. The results, however, sometimes take six or more months before they are received, with some customers reporting not receiving results even after 10 months.
Customers also are vocal on review sites about the lack of Dante Lab’s customer service and support. This includes frustration about oftentimes not receiving replies to support requests.
The genetic testing company does not appear to have been engaged in a public lawsuit. While there have been complaints in which unhappy customers have voiced there should be a Dante Labs lawsuit, the company does not appear to not faced litigation.
The most common complaints have to do with the turnaround time for test results as well as faulty kits that resulted in customers having to receive new ones and wait longer for their results. One news story highlighted a mistake where Dante’s third-party test kit supplier sent five customers genetic test kits that contained spit because the kits had already been used.
A growing number of people have voiced concern over Dante Labs’ business operations, accusing it of being a scam. One customer reported on Reddit that he purchased his kit on Black Friday and believed he was supposed to be able to download his raw genome data as FASTQ and BAM files, but then found out he had to pay more to download his genome data.
There’s another complaint on the Better Business Bureau website that reports the DNA sample was sent to the lab, but no results were returned. Dante Labs customer service said they would send a new kit, but the customer never received it nor a refund.
Dante Labs’ Trustpilot site is littered with complaints from customers. Most of the complaints pertain to customer service issues and not receiving reports that were purchased. There are also complaints regarding data quality and inconsistencies within the genome sequencing data that people have received.
Even some of the positive reviews have some negative comments included in them, such as the one with the title ’Stressful company to Trust.’
At the time of writing, the Trustpilot page for Dante Labs has 3.5 stars.
Reddit has many subreddits that discuss Dante Labs’ business operations. The most popular subreddits are:
Many of the topics are negative and accuse the company of being a scam, providing bogus data, or not delivering purchases.
Dante Labs is not the same as 23andMe in that Dante Labs offer whole genome sequencing while 23andMe only offers ancestry DNA testing with a basic health report.
In addition, 23andMe uses a genotyping genetic test that tests less than 0.1% of the genome while the whole genome sequencing tests provided by Dante Labs, Full Genomes, Veritas and Sequencing.com tests 100% of the genome.
Dante Labs’ whole-genome sequencing service is for people who want to learn as much as possible about their genetic makeup. 23andMe is for people who want to know their ethnicity and heritage as well as a bit of information about their health as it relates to their genes.
When comparing Dante Labs vs. 23andMe’s DNA tests, it boils down to whether someone wants a recreational test that will primarily provide genealogy-based information or if someone wants a professional-grade test that obtains 100% of their genome. That’s the difference between the two.
Dante Labs offers the ability for customers who have had genotyping tests from other DNA testing companies, such as 23andMe, MyHeritage, and AncesryDNA. After uploading your data, Dante then offers additional analysis, such as the ability to purchase reports that include information that 23andMe and the other companies don’t provide. Dante offer’s the following information:
- Nutrigenomics & Lifestyle
Being able to upload data from 23andMe’s genotyping based test enables Dante Labs to show people how limited 23andMe’s data actually is. This opens the door for Dante to promote the benefits of their whole genome sequencing test and sell their genome sequencing to customers who have already taken a test from 23andMe and similar consumer genetics companies.
Veritas Genetics is a competitor genome company to Dante Labs. They also offer a clinical-grade 30X whole-genome sequencing and interpretation service.
The main difference between Dante Labs vs. Veritas Genetics is that people cannot purchase Veritas’ whole-genome sequencing service online. This is because Vertias requires a physician to order their whole genome sequencing for their patients. Dante Labs, Full Genomes, and Sequencing.com, on the other hand, offer whole-genome sequencing directly to consumers, which means it can be ordered online by a consumer without having to go through a doctor.
2021 Update: Veritas Genetics is now offering coronavirus testing through their website. Dante Labs is also offering coronavirus testing as well.
Whole-genome sequencing analyzes entire genomes. This includes the entire coding (exon) and non-coding (intron) regions of all genes and all chromosomes in a person’s genome.
The genetic information that comes from this process helps to identify inherited disorders and characterize mutations that can drive cancer.
Dante Labs offers two types of tests:
- Whole Genome Sequencing Test: This test is best for people who want to know about genetic health risks and DNA-based fitness and nutrition information.
- Whole GenomeZ: This test is for people or physicians with an interest in screening for rare genetic diseases.
Whole genome sequencing costs have dropped significantly over the years and advancements in genomic technology have led to more powerful genomics research. Dante Labs uses Illumina’s genome sequencing hardware to provide high-resolution views of the genome that captures large and small variants. This allows Dante’s sequencing center to sequence the large amount of data required to provide genome sequencing services.
Dante Labs’ whole-genome sequencing is the same as Dante Labs’ full genome sequencing.
Dante Labs’ full genome sequencing provides information to customers about:
- Rare Diseases
With a complete view of the full genome, customers are able to make effective decisions in changing their lifestyle, seeking personalized medicine, and preventative treatment, if necessary.
A blogger who wrote about his experience with Dante Labs’ reported that his Dante Labs genome sequencing report came back to him with 163 pages. He had a whopping 2,095,677,412 base pairs sequenced. After he went through the findings, he decided that it was too much for him alone (even though he is a geneticist himself).
He decided to reach out to an online genetic counselor at Dante Labs, which, for an additional fee, is an added feature of the Dante Labs genome sequencing package. He also consulted with his primary care physician.
The genetic counselor was able to identify the most concerning risks and then he took those risks and discussed ways he could fight against his genes with his primary care physician. The primary care physician came up with a plan to combat the risks and how to monitor his health to take action if his genes won the fight.
Fortunately, there are also third-party sites, such as Sequencing.com, that offer DNA analysis ‘apps’ that further analyze the raw genome data provided by Dante Labs. For example, there are apps for almost anything that can be detected on a genetic level, including apps for a wide range of health issues and also apps for genealogy.
The above is one example of a person’s experience with Dante Labs’ service. Most customers who have their full genome sequenced are aware that they will receive a wealth of information that may not make much sense at first. This why it’s common for genome sequencing companies to also offer add-on genetic counseling service. Meeting with a primary care physician is also an important part of making the data actionable by putting the report to use in improving health and wellness.
The Dante Labs’ full genome sequencing report includes two reports:
- Wellness and Lifestyle Report
- Nutrigenomics Report
These are the only two Dante Labs reports that come with the service. Additional Dante Labs are available for purchase.
It is possible to purchase all Dante Labs reports for an additional $499.
Dante Lab results are provided in three raw genome data formats:
Most people will have a difficult time making sense of the massive amount of raw genome data because it is highly technical. This is where genetic reports come in. The reports analyze the data and provide information that is much easier to understand.
The Dante Lab raw data is simply a series of letters and numbers that do not make much sense until they are analyzed. The only way to analyze the Dante Lab raw data is to purchase reports. For instance, the Wellness and Lifestyle report and the Nutrigenomics Dante Labs report provide information on wellness and nutrition.
Anyone who wants to analyze for other topics, such as rare diseases will need to purchase the analysis report. The reports will analyze the Dante Lab raw data and provide an interpretation of that data.
At one time, Dante Labs customers could download all of their raw genome data. This, however, is no longer allowed by the company. This limits the use of the Dante Lab Results with other DNA testing companies. Fortunately, Sequencing.com has a sophisticated Dante Labs raw data import tool that can migrate data for use with the apps in Sequencing’s DNA App Store.
Dante Labs sample reports are hard to come by as the company doesn’t provide many examples of sample reports. Some customers, however, have shared their reports online.
Below is an example of a Dante Labs report. This specific report indicates if there are any ‘affected genes’ identified within the genome sequencing data. ‘Affected’ is a term used in Dante’s reports to describe a gene that may have a genetic variation or mutation that may be of significance. In this specific example, mutations that may have importance have been detected in the BLM and BRCA1 genes.
Dante Labs has offices located in Italy, New York City, and Delaware.
Dante Labs’ reports their United States’ headquarters address is 379 W. Broadway #538 New York, NY 10012, which is the location for WeWork (a coworking space in New York City).
They also have a registered location at 16192 Coastal Highway, Lewes, Delaware 19958. This is the same address as a company called Harvard Business Servies, Inc.
Dante Labs Italy location address is Dante Labs c/o Tecnopolo D’Abruzzo, Strada Statale 17, 67100, L’Aquila (AQ), Italy.
There is no public phone number for Dante Labs.
Dante Labs UK only exists through their website, which has an URL of danelabs.co.uk. There is no location in the UK, but services are available in that country through Dante’s website.
Dante Labs Italy can be accessed through their website from Italy. People in other countries, such as the United States will be redirected to the US-based website when trying to access the Italy version of the website.
Dante Labs site that appears for people located in Italy appropriately contains content in Italian.
The Promethease Dante Labs connection was possible when Dante Labs used to allow customers to download their raw data. In 2020, however, Dante stopped allowing customers to download their raw data to be used on sites like Promethease.
In other words, the Promethease Dante Labs connection has been broken. This has decreased the value of the Dante Labs whole genome sequencing service for some people as they can now no longer use third-party DNA analysis sites such as Promethease.
Dante Labs Ehlers Danlos report, which provides an assessment of the genetic risk of Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS), is available on the website. The Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Report is $49 and is only for customers who have already bought Dante’s whole genome sequencing test.
The Dante Labs Ehlers Danlos report analyzes both common mutations, known as founder or hotspot mutations that cause EDS, as well as rare variants related to the condition.
What is Ehlers Danlos? It’s a genetic disorder affecting connective tissues. The disorder impacts the following organs:
- Blood Vessels
- …other organs and tissues.
Connective tissue defects can lead to loose joints and death in some situations. Early diagnosis is key to mitigating the severity of the disorder. This is why knowing whether some is at risk for it is important.
Dante Labs Ehlers Danlos report analyzes 61 genes and reports on all variants.
The following are all of the genes analyzed in the Dante Labs Ehlers Danlos report:
AAGAB, ABCA12, ABCA3, ABCC6, ABHD5, ADAMTS2, AGPAT2, AK2, ALDH18A1, ALDH3A2, ALOX12B, ALOXE3, AP3B1 ,AP3D1, AQP5, ARHGAP31, ATP2C1, ATP6V0A2, ATP7A, B4GALT7, BAP1, BCS1L, BGN, BLM, BLOC1S3, BLOC1S6, BRCA1, BRCA2, BSCL2, C10ORF11, CBS, CDH3, CDK4, CDKN2A, CDSN, CERS3, CHST14, COL11A1, COL17A1, COL1A1, COL1A2, COL2A1, COL3A1, COL5A1, COL5A2, COL7A1, CTC1, CTSC, CYP4F22, DDB2, DKC1, DLL4, DOCK6, DSE, DSG1, DSG2, DSG4, DSP, DST, DTNBP1, EBP, EDA, EDAR, EDARADD, EDN3, EDNRB, EFEMP2, ELN, ENPP1, EOGT, ERCC1, ERCC2, ERCC3, ERCC4, ERCC5, ERCC6, ERCC8, EVC, EVC2, EXPH5, FBLN5, FBN1, FBN2, FERMT1, FKBP14, FLG, FLNA, GJA1, GJB2, GJB3, GJB4, GJB6, GORAB, GPR143, GRIP1, HOXC13, HPS1, HPS3, HPS4, HPS5, HPS6, HR, IFT122, ITGA3, ITGA6, ITGB4, JUP, KCTD1, KIT, KITLG, KRT1, KRT10, KRT14, KRT16, KRT17, KRT2, KRT5, KRT6A, KRT6B, KRT6C, KRT9, LAMA3, LAMB3, LAMC2, LMNA, LOR, LRP6, LTBP4, LYST, MBTPS2, MC1R, MITF, MLPH, MPLKIP, MYO5A, NF1, NF2, NHP2, NIPAL4 ,NOP10, NOTCH1, OCA2, PARN, PAX3, PEX7, PHYH, PKP1, PLEC, PLOD1, PNPLA1, POLH, PORCN, POT1, PRKD1, PTCH1, PTEN, PTPN11, PYCR1, RAB27A, RAF1, RBPJ, RECQL4, RMRP, RTEL1, SERPINB7, SFTPB, SFTPC, SLC24A5, SLC27A4, SLC2A10, SLC38A8, SLC39A13, SLC39A4, SLC45A2, SLURP1, SMAD3, SMARCB1, SNAI2, SOX10, SPINK5, SPRED1, STS, SUFU, SUMF1, TERC, TERT, TGFB2, TGFBR1, TGFBR2, TGM1, TGM5, TINF2, TP53, TP63, TRPV3, TSC1, TSC2, TYR, TYRP1, UBR1,USB1,WDR35,WNT10A,WRAP53,WRN, XPA, XPC, ZMPSTE24, ZNF469
Ehlers Danlos Syndrome is also one of the thousands of diseases included in Sequencing’s rare disease screen, which analyzes whole genome sequencing data from Dante Labs, Full Genomes, Veritas as well as Sequencing’s Ultimate Genome Sequencing service.
Besides the reports offered by Dante, the best tools to analyze Dante Labs DNA data are found at Sequencing.com.
A customer can import their Dante Labs raw data from their Dante account directly into their Sequencing account. The customers can then use any of the apps in Sequencing’s DNA App Store to further analyze the raw data. Many of the apps are free (hint: the free apps are located in the ‘free’ category of the App Store).
No, Dante Lab genome sequencing cannot be used for Ancestry DNA. This is because AncestryDNA does not allow raw data files from any third-party test to be uploaded to an Ancestry.com account.
Because there is no way to upload data to Ancestry, it’s not possible to use whole genome sequencing data from Dante Labs at AncestryDNA.
Yes, it is possible to convert Dante Labs to 23andMe’s DNA data format. This can be accomplished using third-party tools, such as EvE Premium, which can process the FASTQ, BAM, and VCF genome data files provided by Dante Labs. Using this online tool, a person can select their desired output format for the data, such as having the data converted into a format known as 23andMe’s format.
Data that is converted into 23andMe’s format will be in txt file format and will include data that is laid out in the same columns and in the same way as the DNA data files provided by 23andMe for its own tests.
This can be useful because once the data has been converted into 23andMe format, that data can then be uploaded to, and analyzed by third-party sites, that would otherwise not be capable of processing genome sequencing data.
Whole genome sequencing or full genome sequencing is a powerful genetic testing service that should be taken advantage of for many reasons. Dante Labs was one of the first to offer this service but over the last couple of years, they have been faced with many challenges (mostly customer service related) and have made decisions that have decreased the value of their services (not allowing the export or downloading of raw data). For this reason, Dante Labs is no longer considered a leader, with many people seeking alternatives.
SelfDecode: The DNA analysis apps from SelfDecode are a good option for those who are looking for health-focused DNA analysis. They offer personalized reports that include recommendations to improve users’ quality of life.
23andMe: While the website has grown in popularity over the years, 23andMe mainly focuses on ancestry information along with some basic health information. This is mainly for people who are ok with a limited amount of genetic information. Unlike Dante Labs, 23andMe allows the raw DNA data from their testing to be easily downloaded so that it can then be uploaded to third-party sites for analysis. The only downside is the data is limited since the service analyzes less than 0.1% of the genome. 23andMe does not offer whole genome sequencing.
MyHeritage & AncestryDNA: Both of these services are similar to 23andMe. They do not offer whole genome sequencing.
Nebula: Nebula Genomics does offer whole genome sequencing and allows users to download their DNA raw data to be used with other services.
Sequencing.com: Sequencing.com offers clinical-grade 30x whole genome sequencing and also includes the world’s largest collection of DNA analysis apps. Sequencing also offers genetic counseling as part of its genome sequencing service. Free analysis reports are included with the purchase of the whole genome sequencing service.
DNA raw data can be downloaded from Sequencing so that it can then be used at third-party sites like MyHeritage GenomeLink and Nebula.
While we’re biased (we work for Sequencing!), we recommend buying whole-genome sequencing from Sequencing.com. Take full advantage of all the analysis reports on our site, and then download the raw DNA data to use on other sites for even more information. Many users do not find a need to do the latter, as our collection of DNA analysis apps and reports include the latest analyses. We also add new apps to our collection each month so that you can continue to discover more about your genome and yourself throughout your life.