Yaniv Erlich

Yaniv Erlich is fascinated by the connection between DNA and data. As a professor and researcher at Columbia University and as CSO of MyHeritage.com, he has performed foundational work in genetic privacy and large-scale studies of crowd-sourced genomic data. Dubbed by the journal Nature as the “Genome Hacker,” he and his team discovered a privacy loophole enabling re-identification of allegedly anonymous male research participants using just internet searches and their Y chromosome. He is also responsible for the construction of the world’s largest family tree comprising 13 million people, as well as the development of the website DNA.land, which has compiled the gene sequences of more than 100,000 donors in an effort to discover the genetic bases for several conditions in Israeli families. Yaniv's team has demonstrated stable DNA data storage, reaching a density of 215 petabyte per gram of DNA. He’s been awarded numerous prizes, has published 40 papers and authored 5 patents.

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Computational Geneticist