FAQs

Our Company
NEBULA GENOMICS
Who is Nebula Genomics?
Nebula Genomics’ mission is to usher in the era of personal genomics by providing access to affordable Whole Genome Sequencing and creating technology to protect genomic data privacy. By enabling affordable personal genome sequencing and secure genomic data sharing, Nebula Genomics will create large genomic datasets that will help advance our understanding of human genetics, accelerate drug discovery and streamline clinical trials. Nebula Genomics was co-founded by genomics pioneer Prof. George Church. Our offices are located in San Francisco and Boston, two global centers of tech and biotech innovation.
What does Nebula Genomics offer consumers?
We offer the most affordable 30x Whole Genome Sequencing on the market. We also provide weekly-updated, comprehensive reporting and powerful tools to explore your genomic data. Additionally, as the leading privacy-focused person genomics company, we enable our users to benefit from personal genome sequencing without risking their privacy.
What does Nebula Genomics offer researchers?
Researchers can use genomic data to understand the causes of diseases and develop new drugs. We created Nebula Genomics to accelerate genomic data generation, incentivize data sharing, and make large datasets easily accessible. By enabling our users to share their genomic data securely, we want to help advance medicine and improve healthcare.
SEQUENCING
What is 30x Whole Genome Sequencing?
30x Whole Genome Sequencing is the current gold standard for genetic testing. While most other commercially available DNA tests (e.g. 23andMe and AncestryDNA) read your DNA at about 600,000 positions (~ 0.02%), Whole Genome Sequencing reads out over 6,000,000,000 positions in your genome (~ 100%). At 30x coverage, Whole Genome Sequencing is also much more accurate because every letter of the DNA is read on average 30 times. This generates a thousand-fold more information that is also more accurate, enabling more comprehensive reporting on traits and ancestry.
What do I need to do to sequence my genome?
You can purchase 30x Whole Genome Sequencing from Nebula Genomics. We will send you a sample collection kit and, after receiving your sample back from you, we will extract, sequence, and analyze your DNA.
What sequencing platform do you use?
We do 150 bp paired-end read sequencing using high-throughput MGI DNBSEQ-T7 DNA sequencing machines.
How do you process the sequencing data?
We align your sequencing data to the hg38 version of the human genome using a GATK-based pipeline.
Do you offer your sequencing service to researchers?
Yes! Please contact us at partners@nebula.org.
REPORTING
What is Nebula Explore?
Nebula Explore is the name of our reporting service for Whole Genome Sequencing. Nebula Explore includes access to all your data, weekly updates based on the latest scientific discoveries, advanced ancestry analysis, and powerful genome exploration tools.
What is the Nebula Research Library?
Nebula Research Library is a collection of research studies that have been curated by the scientists at Nebula Genomics. With the Nebula Research Library, you will be able to stay up to date with the latest research in human genomics and learn how it applies to you. You can explore the current content of the Nebula Research Library on our blog.
How do I interpret the content of the Nebula Research Library?
For many studies in the Nebula Research Library, we calculate polygenic scores based on your genetic information. Your polygenic score is the collective effect of multiple genetic variants present in your genome. To help you interpret your polygenic scores, we calculate percentiles that tell you how your polygenic scores compare to the polygenic scores of other Nebula Genomics users. A high percentile means that you have a higher polygenic score compared to other users. For example, if you are in the 90th percentile, it means that your polygenic score is higher than 90% of all Nebula Genomics users. However, because our understanding of human genetics remains limited, having a high or low polygenic score does not necessarily mean you are at a significantly greater or lower risk of diseases. Please speak with your health care provider if you have any questions about the information learned from the Nebula Research Library.
What data exploration tools do you provide?
We provide three core exploration tools that empower you to explore your DNA and learn at your own pace. With our gene analysis tool, you can examine any gene of interest and identify relevant genetic variants and mutations. Our variant search tool enables you to search your genome for any genetic variant that has been reported in the literature. Finally, you can use our genome browser to take a direct look at your sequencing data. You can read more about our exploration tools in this blog post (https://blog.nebula.org/international-availability).
What ancestry analysis do you provide?
We provide information about ancestry collaboration with FamilyTreeDNA. In particular, we focus on the analysis of paternal and maternal ancestry. For male users, we sequence the Y chromosome (Y-CHR) that they inherited from their fathers. For both male and female users, we sequence mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) that was inherited from their mothers. This analysis is enabled by 30x Whole Genome Sequencing. In contrast to other genetic tests (e.g. 23andMe and AncestryDNA), we discover all genetic variants in Y-DNA and mtDNA. We enable our users to easily transfer their genomic data to FamilyTreeDNA and get access to the world’s largest Y-DNA and mtDNA databases and trace their paternal and maternal ancestry. The service also includes the ability to connect with relatives. Furthermore, FamilyTreeDNA will offer Nebula Genomics users the opportunity to upgrade their accounts and get access to additional ancestry reporting. The ancestry reporting will be available in Q2 2020.
Will I be able to download my genomic data?
Yes! You will be able to download all your genomic data. This includes your FASTQ, BAM and VCF files.
Can I also upload existing data to your website?
Yes! We support the upload of 23andMe and AncestryDNA files. Our reporting service for users who upload data is called Nebula Expand. It is called that because we take your 23andMe or AncestryDNA data and greatly expand using a statistical model that predicts genetic variants at positions that have not been read out directly. We then analyze your expanded data and make all the content in the Nebula Research Library available to you! You can explore the current content of the Nebula Research Library in our blog.
PAYMENTS
How does billing work?
You are charged $299 for sequencing immediately after purchase. You are charged your first subscription fee when your sample has been sequenced and your results are ready.
Why is there a subscription?
We charge a subscription fee because our reporting is highly dynamic. Every week we add new reports based on the latest scientific discoveries and our data exploration tools empower you to answer any question about your DNA.
What happens if I cancel my subscription?
You lose access to your reports and data exploration tools. However, you retain access to your genomic data and can download it anytime.
Can I upload genomic data that I got from elsewhere?
Yes! A free 14-day trial is available to users who upload 23andMe or AncestryDNA data. During that time you get full access to the content of the Nebula Research Library and receive weekly updates. If you do not cancel your trial after 14 days, you will be charged a subscription fee.
LOGISTICS
Do you ship internationally?
Yes! We ship our sample collection kits to almost every country in the world. A complete list can be found here (https://blog.nebula.org/international-availability).
Is it possible to pay for a kit and send it to another person?
Yes. You can designate your purchase as a gift and have the sample collection kit be sent to another person.
How do I collect a sample of my DNA?
We will send you a cheek swab. You will collect a sample of your DNA by rubbing the swab against the inner side of your cheek.
Do I need to register my sample collection kit?
Yes. You can find the instructions here (https://nebulagenomics.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360037455332-Registering-your-DNA-Collection-Kit). We recommend registering your sample collection kit before sending it back to us.
Do I have to pay for shipping my sample back to you?
If you are located in the United States, you will be provided a prepaid return label. If you are located outside the United States your return label will not be prepaid and you will have to pay for shipping yourself.
What address do I return my kit to?
For orders in the US, the return postage is pre-paid and labeled on the provided envelope. For international orders, you will need to provide your own postage with the following return address: Nebula 1445 N Loop W Suite 820 Houston, TX. 77008
Where will my sample be sequenced?
We sequence our samples in a CLIA/CAP-certified laboratory in Hong Kong. Sequencing in North American and European laboratories will be available soon.
How will I receive my data and reports?
Your genomic data and reports will be made available through your Nebula Genomics account.
How long does it take to receive my results?
On average, you can expect to receive your sample collection kit within two weeks after ordering. After we receive your sample, your results will be available in about 8-10 weeks.
Can I upgrade from 0.4x Whole Genome Sequencing?
Upgrades from 0.4x are currently not available because 30x and 0.4x sequencing are done in different laboratories. Please submit a new sample and create a new account.
PRIVACY
How is Nebula Genomics different from other genetic testing companies in regard to data privacy?
Nebula Genomics is the leading privacy-focused personal genomics company. Our mission is to create technologies that will enable our users to benefit from biomedical research and contribute to future discoveries without compromising their privacy. We have the GDPR Privacy Shield certification, we regularly audit the labs of our sequencing partners, and we develop technology to empower our users to stay in control over their personal genomic data. Our work on genomic data privacy has been published in multiple academic journals and is available on our website (https://nebula.org/technology/).
LEGAL
Where can I find your Privacy Policy?
Our Privacy Policy can be found here: https://nebulagenomics.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360036114572
Where can I find your Terms of Use?
Our Terms of Use can be found here: https://nebulagenomics.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360024317892-Terms-of-Use
Where can I find your Refund Policy?
Our Refund Policy can be found here: https://nebulagenomics.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360028257612-Refund-and-Cancellation-Policy-.
MORE ABOUT THE NEBULA LIBRARY
Checkout our full list of curated publications!