Genomics

Genomics is a branch of biology focused on the structure, function, evolution, and mapping of genomes, the complete set of DNA in the single cell of an organism. Sequencing a genome means determining the order of its chemical sub-units. Scientists use these sequences to map and catalog human genetic variation to improve our understanding of human biology, disease susceptibility, and drug response. 

As the cost of genetic sequencing has fallen rapidly in recent years, concerns have increased about inaccurate or misunderstood results, violations of genetic privacy, and misuse of genetic databases. Though direct-to-consumer genetic testing has become a highly publicized industry, many experts express considerable skepticism about its usefulness, either for health conditions or ancestry information. Genetic sequencing is also increasingly used in police work, since DNA in even small amounts of blood, saliva, or other biological materials left at a crime scene can identify or exonerate a suspect. However, police DNA databases, which in many jurisdictions include people who have been arrested for but never convicted of a crime, raise concerns about privacy, potential civil liberties violations, and racial discrimination.


Aggregated News

Using DNA to find a killer sounds easy: Upload some DNA to a database, get a match and — bingo — suspect found. But it took new genetic sleuthing tools to track down the man suspected of being the Golden...

Aggregated News

Gene therapy is showing promise for treating one of the most common genetic disorders.

Results of a study published Wednesday show that 15 of 22 patients with beta-thalassemia who got gene therapy were able to stop or sharply reduce the...

Aggregated News

Levi Strauss & Company introduced a novel benefit for employees at its San Francisco headquarters last fall: free genetic screening...

Biopolitical Times

David Reich, a professor of genetics at Harvard, is the author of a new best-selling book, Who We Are...

Woman in lab coat looking at test tubes

Aggregated News

Gloved hand holding pipette and test tube

Aggregated News

Blue double helix DNA on black background

Aggregated News

DNA inside a syringe on a blue background.

Aggregated News

Biopolitical Times
The letters A C T G repeat in primary colors descend down a screen

Aggregated News

Image of a scientist in a dark lab room cutting agarose gel used in electrophoresis.

Aggregated News