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About Sequencing & Genomics


An organism's genome refers to all the hereditary information encoded in its genes. Sequencing a complete genome, a gene, or a fragment of genetic material involves determining the order of its sub-units: adenine, cytosine, guanine, and thymine.

Scientists are using individuals' genetic sequences to map and catalog human genetic variation in order to improve understanding of human biology, disease susceptibility, and drug response. As costs falls rapidly, the scale and speed of gene sequencing is increasing. The Human Genome Project required thirteen years and $3 billion to sequence the first complete, general human genome. Subsequent projects, such as the International HapMap Project, examined genetic variation between population groups, raising concerns of giving undue biological significance to social categories of race.

Now, the sequencing of complete genomes of specific individuals is becoming almost routine. For example, the Personal Genome Project plans to sequence 100,000 genomes.

Lower prices have also opened the door to companies that offer personal, direct-to-consumer genetic tests.


Genetically enhancing our children could raise interest ratesby James D. MillerBusiness InsiderJune 19th, 2016Should researchers develop technology to genetically decipher and alter intelligence, individuals and the state would borrow more and save less.
First Human Test of CRISPR Proposedby Antonio RegaladoMIT Technology ReviewJune 16th, 2016Researchers propose using CRISPR/Cas9 to alter gene sequences associated with certain illnesses, such as some forms of cancer.
How iPS cells changed the worldby Megan ScudellariNatureJune 15th, 2016Induced pluripotent stem cells have become a potentially helpful method of personalized therapy.
Gene drive debate must include voices from Africa, elsewhereby Richard Nchabi KamwiSTATJune 15th, 2016Those countries most affected by malaria and other illnesses will be most affected by gene drive technologies.
Should We Sequence the DNA of Every Cancer Patient?by Antonio RegaladoMIT Technology ReviewJune 14th, 2016To match cancer patients with drugs, Strata Oncology plans to offer free genetic tests.
Myriad Genetics Refuses To Accept That People Have A Right To Access Their Own DNA Sequencesby Glyn MoodyTech DirtJune 13th, 2016The fight for a patent over people's DNA sequences has been met with resistance by the US Supreme Court and the ACLU.
Are DIY gene-testing kits a good idea?​ by Sharon BrennanThe Guardian June 13th, 2016Over-the-counter tests can predict the likelihood of developing illnesses such as cancer and diabetes. However, they cause some people anxiety, as there are no cures for most hereditary conditions.
Now They’re Sequencing DNA in Outer Spaceby Antonio RegaladoMIT Technology ReviewJune 10th, 2016Eyeing eventual Mars mission, NASA plans first test of genetic diagnostics in space.
Better Mitochondrial Replacement: But Why? by Ricki LewisPLOSJune 9th, 2016Mitochondrial replacement raises questions around necessity and efficacy, as the relatively new process manipulates embryos.
Lab-grown mini-guts open door to personalised medicineby Tarek BazleyAl JazeeraJune 9th, 2016Dutch researchers have used the organoid technology to choose medication tailored for individual patients.
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