African and African-American populations are underrepresented in genetic research. For a limited time, 23andMe is offering a free kit to individuals with Sub-Saharan African ancestry.

The goal of the project is to improve 23andMe’s ancestry product through a better understanding of genetic diversity within Africa. They are specifically interested in reaching individuals from countries associated with the American slave trade in order to help African-Americans trace their roots.

Participation is simple. Answer a few questions about your ancestry and if you meet the eligibility criteria, 23andMe will ship you a kit. Participants will have access to all the features of 23andMe, including personalized health and ancestry information, at no additional cost.

To be eligible you must:

  1. have four (4) grandparents from the same sub-Saharan African country. Countries of interest include Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo , Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, and Sierra Leone.
  2. be 18 years of age,
  3. have Internet access and be willing to take an online survey about ancestry and provide a saliva sample,
  4. live in the United States in a state that allows 23andMe shipping. (Maryland is not one of those states)

To enroll in the project, and learn more about 23andMe, visit their site: https://www.23andme.com/cohort/africanancestry/

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