From an Oprah-endorsed test kit to a scarf based on a saliva test, DNA gifts are hot for the holidays.
Stumped about holiday gifts? Reach for the stuff of life itself.
Gifts made of or related to DNA have multiplied over the last several years as interest in genealogy has picked up. You’ve got your basics, like coffee mugs and T-shirts with ye old double helix on them, but there are other things to order, wrap up and hand over as gifts. Some ideas:
HUMAN DNA KITS
Yes, we’re talking saliva for the holidays. Oprah Winfrey was taken by one kit in particular, the Ancestry kit from a company called 23andMe. She put the kit on her 2017 list of her favorite things. According to some reviews, the kit has a good number of features, as does one from Ancestry.com, which boasts the world’s largest DNA network to reveal ancestors and where they came from.
The 23andMe company, named for the 23 chromosomes in human DNA, also has a health kit to identify genetic risks and whether a person is a carrier of certain inherited conditions.
The process of saliva collection is painless and straightforward at 23andMe. The giver buys a kit for $99, then the gift recipient registers at the company’s website, spits into a tube provided and returns the sample with a prepaid label and box.
DOG DNA KITS
Because who doesn’t want to know the genetic makeup of man’s best friend?
For $199, a company called Embark makes a dog DNA test that generates a report that the company says will identify everything from geographic origin to personality traits through the tracking of more than 200,000 genetic markers.
Another company, Orivet Genetic Pet Care, will do the same, including disease screening, breed identification and purebred profiles, including parentage confirmation, for $85.
DNA WALL ART
The company DNA11 has been around since 2005. It produces colorful framed canvas art for hanging, and smaller versions for desk display, based on samples of DNA collected via a mouth swab. Several size options are available, as are a range of color schemes. Prices range from $199 to $649.
The DNA of several people can be combined into one canvas or split into two screens for couples. The company delivers to 29 countries.
DNA FOR THE NECK
Who doesn’t need a scarf crafted around one’s genetic code? A London company, Dot One, is partnering with another company, Helix, to provide a testing kit and instructions on how a gift recipient can get it done in colorful yarns. Everything is on Helix.com. The DNA kit is $80 and the one-of-a-kind knitted scarf is $150.
Colors can be selected to represent each of four DNA bases: adenine, thymine, cytosine and guanine. The machine-washable scarves are a mix of Italian wool and acrylics.
Each scarf comes with a card detailing 33 genetic traits based on the saliva sample submitted for analysis. It also comes with a booklet that explains the basics of DNA and how the subject’s DNA was translated to create the pattern on the scarf.