Learning about your ancestral history would definitely kill some time in quarantine. Then again, the idea of mailing your saliva to a biotech company in California seems a little sketchy in the time of Coronavirus. This is the rhythm of the Facebook chatter around Ancestry ($PRIVATE:ANCESTRY) and 23andMe ($PRIVATE:23ANDME).

23andMe’s Facebook mentions surged in late March at 7,840 and is now down to 928, an 88% decrease. 

During the spike in engagement, many people were suggesting that the DNA testing company should develop Coronavirus test kits. Earlier this week, 23andMe announced that the company is beginning research on COVID-19.

Ancestry’s Facebook mentions also peaked in March and have since dropped 79%.

Hiring efforts have been cut at both companies, as the DNA testing industry takes a hit. 23andMe’s job postings plummeted 88%, with just four openings as of this week. Ancestry’s job postings have been falling since the beginning of the year, now at nine.

Even in February, Business Insider published an article about the fall of the DNA testing industry with newly raised ethical and safety concerns. Now, it might not recover.

About the Data:

Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales. 

Further Reading: 

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