Shivom Aims to Bring Human Genome Mapping to the Blockchain
It is the latest German ICO to come to market, and under Shivom’s ambitious plans, members of the general public will be able to perform their own personal genome mapping for as little as $900, although its project team claims that this figure could fall to as low as $100 within the next few years.
Having access to our genetic fingerprint gives us a much greater insight into which diseases we may be predisposed to, as well as which kinds of treatments would be most effective.
Personalised Management of Data
However, in order for us to understand our genomes, the database which holds this data needs to be as large as it possibly can be so that the biomedical community can analyze “enough genome sequences representing the full range of natural human variation,” according to the project’s mission statement.
However, this is also the kind of information which can be used against you. One of the big concerns about the big data era is that multi-billion dollar companies are collecting this data without our approval and may use it to restrict our access to certain products and services, or charge discriminatory pricing.
Under Shivom’s model, all personal genome data is secured by a blockchain which can only be accessed by users with the relevant credentials. Individuals will then be able to sell or donate their own data only to research institutes or medical companies if they so wished.
According to Dr. Axel Schumacher, co-founder and CEO of Shivom, “this is a trillion dollar market” and involves building “the largest genomics and healthcare data hub on the planet.”
Funds raised in the ICO will go towards ecosystem-building, marketing and building infrastructure. “We’re aiming at having at least one laboratory for genomic sequencing on each continent,” Schumacher added.
Such an ambitious project stands little chance of success without public awareness. To increase its profile the company has partnered with DigitalX, an Australian Securities Exchange-listed ICO launchpad consultancy, which has previously worked with big names like SingularityNET and Bankera.