Scientists have sequenced the full genomes of 91 sperm from one man, the first complete sequencing of a human gamete cell. It demonstrates the vast genetic variation in one person, according to genetic researchers at Stanford.
In the nine years since the Humane Genome Project wrapped up, gene sequencing has gotten faster and cheaper at a pace rivaling the computer industry. Now a technology company in the UK has another breakthrough, taking a cue from the computer industry itself: A cluster of fast individual compute nodes, so easily scalable that the company made a USB-powered disposable version.
The goal is to democratize sequencing and eliminate the still-heady costs associated with genetic analysis, making DNA and protein sequencing as commonplace as an exam with a tongue depressor.
DNA has long been used to solve crimes and even exonerate the innocent. Soon, it could be used to pinpoint poo. Apparently, video camera surveillance was way too 20th-century for the good people of Scarlett Place Condominiums in Baltimore, who have proposed DNA tests to identify the originators of dog poop left on the premises.
First universities started using RFID chips to track students' attendance. Now they want their DNA. The University of California-Berkeley, that bastion of hippiedom and experimentation, is replacing its summer reading list with a call for incoming students to voluntarily provide DNA samples.
Walgreen's is ready to plunge headlong into the brave new world of personal genomics retailing, becoming the first retailer to stock store shelves with genetic-testing kits that can test for a person's likelihood of developing a range of genetic ailments, from Alzheimers to breast cancer to obesity. The FDA, however, isn't so thrilled.
DNA-testing Martian soil could lead us to life on another planet
By Lana BirbrairPosted 04.19.2010 at 11:08 am 11 Comments
Someday, microfluidics chips like this one might suss out life on Mars. The chip, developed by Gary Ruvkun, a professor of genetics at Harvard University, would ride along on a soil-collecting rover and search for microscopic life within Martian dust.
Despite coming from a range of different backgrounds, everyone whose genome has been fully sequenced has had one thing in common: they were all healthy. But now, two teams have decoded the first genomes of people who carry genetic diseases, with one group also performing the first-ever full sequencing of an entire nuclear family.
Not sure what to get your favorite Saudi prince or former FEMA chief for their next birthday? Well, look no further than an affordable genetic test for their prize horse. According to a new paper in the Public Library of Science (PLoS), scientists have identified the gene that allows faster running in horses, along with the different alleles that specialize the horse at short, medium, or long distance racing.
As soon as scientists began decoding the human genome, speculation started about an impending age of personalized genetic medicine. Health care Cassandras spun enticing yarns about a future where a patient's disease predispositions would be quickly and cheaply identified. And years after Craig Venter decoded the first human genome (his), the best we've got is a mail order service that guesses at your risk for Alzheimer's.
Now, a new gene sequencing device designed by Stanford engineer Stephen Quake may finally usher in the long predicted practice of personalized genetic medicine. By using a new refrigerator-sized machine to decode the DNA, Quake has cut both the cost and time of the process by at least a fifth.