Using a statistical model based off of 23 million consenting customers 23andMe reported an individual’s predisposition to have bunions and flat feet.
Bunion or hallux valgus is a condition that is characterized by a bony bump that is formed as a result of the misalignment of the joint at the base of the big toe. Using data from 5,30,000 consenting customers, 315 genetic markers associated to this condition were identified. The statistical model used, took into account the age and sex of the customers. Around 17% of the participants reported having had a bunion. However, genetics is not the sole contributing factor to this condition. Ill fitting footwear is also seen to contribute to bunions.
Flat feet is a condition characterized by low or absent foot arches. Assimilating data from around 5,30,000 consenting customers, 414 genetic markers were found to be associated with this condition. The statistical model used took into account the age and sex of the customers to report on whether they are more or less likely to have flat feet. Genetics plays a role in the development of the foot arch known as the medial arch. The arch either never develops, or collapses due to injuries or obesity. This can cause misalignment of bones in the feet and foot pain. Around 25% of the participants reported having flat feet.