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Sample records for human genetic research

  1. Caries: Review of Human Genetics Research

    PubMed Central

    Vieira, Alexandre R.; Modesto, Adriana; Marazita, Mary L.

    2014-01-01

    The NIH Consensus Development Program released a statement in 2001 (NIH Consensus Statement, 2001) and listed six major clinical caries research directions. One of these directions was the need for genetic studies to identify genes and genetic markers of diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic value. This last decade has seen a steep increase in studies investigating the presence of genetic factors influencing individual susceptibility to caries. This review revisits recent caries human genetic studies and provides a perspective for future studies in order to fulfill their promise of revolutionizing our understanding of and the standard of care for the most prevalent bacteria-mediated non-contagious disease in the world. PMID:24853115

  2. Ethical genetic research on human subjects.

    PubMed

    Harris, J

    1999-01-01

    Since the Nuremberg trials and the Nazi doctors trial following World War II, international ethics protocols have emerged designed to protect human subjects from the atrocities of medical experimentation that were literally routine under the Nazis. Some of the apparent "lessons" from the Nazi period have been encapsulated in the Declaration of Helsinki, perhaps the leading medical ethics protocol. This paper argues that these protocols have not been notably conducive to human welfare or to the protection of human rights in the field of human genetics research. The paper proposes new protocols and a new approach to the ethics of research on human subjects.

  3. Caries: review of human genetics research.

    PubMed

    Vieira, Alexandre R; Modesto, Adriana; Marazita, Mary L

    2014-01-01

    The NIH Consensus Development Program released a statement in 2001 (http://consensus.nih.gov/2001/2001DentalCaries115html.htm) and listed six major clinical caries research directions. One of these directions was the need for genetic studies to identify genes and genetic markers of diagnostic, prognostic and therapeutic value. This last decade has seen a steep increase in studies investigating the presence of genetic factors influencing individual susceptibility to caries. This review revisits recent caries human genetic studies and provides a perspective for future studies in order to fulfil their promise of revolutionizing our understanding of and the standard of care for the most prevalent bacteria-mediated non-contagious disease in the world. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  4. Genetic modification of preimplantation embryos: toward adequate human research policies.

    PubMed

    Dresser, Rebecca

    2004-01-01

    Citing advances in transgenic animal research and setbacks in human trials of somatic cell genetic interventions, some scientists and others want to begin planning for research involving the genetic modification of human embryos. Because this form of genetic modification could affect later-born children and their offspring, the protection of human subjects should be a priority in decisions about whether to proceed with such research. Yet because of gaps in existing federal policies, embryo modification proposals might not receive adequate scientific and ethical scrutiny. This article describes current policy shortcomings and recommends policy actions designed to ensure that the investigational genetic modification of embryos meets accepted standards for research on human subjects.

  5. Genetic Testing and Its Implications: Human Genetics Researchers Grapple with Ethical Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rabino, Isaac

    2003-01-01

    Contributes systematic data on the attitudes of scientific experts who engage in human genetics research about the pros, cons, and ethical implications of genetic testing. Finds that they are highly supportive of voluntary testing and the right to know one's genetic heritage. Calls for greater genetic literacy. (Contains 87 references.) (Author/NB)

  6. Genetic Testing and Its Implications: Human Genetics Researchers Grapple with Ethical Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rabino, Isaac

    2003-01-01

    Contributes systematic data on the attitudes of scientific experts who engage in human genetics research about the pros, cons, and ethical implications of genetic testing. Finds that they are highly supportive of voluntary testing and the right to know one's genetic heritage. Calls for greater genetic literacy. (Contains 87 references.) (Author/NB)

  7. African Americans' opinions about human-genetics research.

    PubMed

    Achter, Paul; Parrott, Roxanne; Silk, Kami

    2004-03-01

    Research on attitudes toward genetics and medicine registers skepticism among minority communities, but the reasons for this skepticism are not well known. In the past, studies linked mistrust of the medical system to historical ethics violations involving minority groups and to suspicions about ideological premise and political intent. To assess public knowledge, attitudes, and behavior regarding human-genetics research, we surveyed 858 Americans onsite in four community settings or online in a geographically nonspecific manner. Compared to participants as a whole, African Americans were significantly more likely to believe that clinical trials might be dangerous and that the federal government knowingly conducted unethical research, including studies in which risky vaccines were administered to prison populations. However, African Americans were also significantly more likely to believe that the federal government worked to prevent environmental exposure to toxicants harmful to people with genetic vulnerabilities. Our data suggest that most Americans trust government to act ethically in sponsoring and conducting research, including genetics research, but that African Americans are particularly likely to see government as powerfully protective in some settings yet selectively disingenuous in others.

  8. Genetic testing and its implications: human genetics researchers grapple with ethical issues.

    PubMed

    Rabino, Isaac

    2003-01-01

    To better understand ethical issues involved in the field of human genetics and promote debate within the scientific community, the author surveyed scientists who engage in human genetics research about the pros, cons, and ethical implications of genetic testing. This study contributes systematic data on attitudes of scientific experts. The survey finds respondents are highly supportive of voluntary testing and the right to know one's genetic heritage. The majority consider in utero testing and consequent pregnancy termination acceptable for cases involving likelihood of serious disease but disapprove for genetic reasons they consider arbitrary, leaving a gray area of distinguishing between treatment of disorders and enhancement still to be resolved. While safeguarding patient confidentiality versus protecting at-risk third parties (kin, reproductive partners) presents a dilemma, preserving privacy from misuse by institutional third parties (employers, insurers) garners strong consensus for legislation against discrimination. Finally, a call is made for greater genetic literacy.

  9. Different differences: The use of ‘genetic ancestry’ versus race in biomedical human genetic research

    PubMed Central

    Fujimura, Joan H.; Rajagopalan, Ramya

    2011-01-01

    This article presents findings from our ethnographic research on biomedical scientists’ studies of human genetic variation and common complex disease. We examine the socio-material work involved in genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and discuss whether, how, and when notions of race and ethnicity are or are not used. We analyze how researchers produce simultaneously different kinds of populations and population differences. Although many geneticists use race in their analyses, we find some who have invented a statistical genetics method and associated software that they use specifically to avoid using categories of race in their genetics analysis. Their method allows them to operationalize their concept of ‘genetic ancestry’ without resorting to notions of race and ethnicity. We focus on the construction and implementation of the software’s algorithms, and discuss the consequences and implications of the software technology for debates and policies around the use of race in genetics research. We also demonstrate that the production and use of their method involves a dynamic and fluid assemblage of actors in various disciplines responding to disciplinary and sociopolitical contexts and concerns. This assemblage also includes particular discourses on human history and geography as they become entangled with research on genetic markers and disease. We introduce the concept of ‘genome geography’, to analyze how some researchers studying human genetic variation ‘locate’ stretches of DNA in different places and times. The concept of genetic ancestry and the practice of genome geography rely on old discourses, but they also incorporate new technologies, infrastructures, and political and scientific commitments. Some of these new technologies provide opportunities to change some of our institutional and cultural forms and frames around notions of difference and similarity. Neverthless, we also highlight the slipperiness of genome geography and the

  10. Different differences: the use of 'genetic ancestry' versus race in biomedical human genetic research.

    PubMed

    Fujimura, Joan H; Rajagopalan, Ramya

    2011-02-01

    This article presents findings from our ethnographic research on biomedical scientists' studies of human genetic variation and common complex disease. We examine the socio-material work involved in genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and discuss whether, how, and when notions of race and ethnicity are or are not used. We analyze how researchers produce simultaneously different kinds of populations and population differences. Although many geneticists use race in their analyses, we find some who have invented a statistical genetics method and associated software that they use specifically to avoid using categories of race in their genetic analysis. Their method allows them to operationalize their concept of 'genetic ancestry' without resorting to notions of race and ethnicity. We focus on the construction and implementation of the software's algorithms, and discuss the consequences and implications of the software technology for debates and policies around the use of race in genetics research. We also demonstrate that the production and use of their method involves a dynamic and fluid assemblage of actors in various disciplines responding to disciplinary and sociopolitical contexts and concerns. This assemblage also includes particular discourses on human history and geography as they become entangled with research on genetic markers and disease.We introduce the concept of'genome geography' to analyze how some researchers studying human genetic variation'locate' stretches of DNA in different places and times. The concept of genetic ancestry and the practice of genome geography rely on old discourses, but they also incorporate new technologies, infrastructures, and political and scientific commitments. Some of these new technologies provide opportunities to change some of our institutional and cultural forms and frames around notions of difference and similarity. Nevertheless, we also highlight the slipperiness of genome geography and the tenacity of race and race

  11. Robotics for recombinant DNA and human genetics research

    SciTech Connect

    Beugelsdijk, T.J.

    1990-01-01

    In October of 1989, molecular biologists throughout the world formally embarked on ultimately determining the set of genetic instructions for a human being. Called by some the Manhattan Project'' a molecular biology, pursuit of this goal is projected to require approximately 3000 man years of effort over a 15-year period. The Humane Genome Initiative is a worldwide research effort that has the goal of analyzing the structure of human deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and determining the location of all human genes. The Department of Energy (DOE) has designated three of its national laboratories as centers for the Human Genome Project. These are Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), and Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory (LBL). These laboratories are currently working on different, but complementary technology development areas in support of the Human Genome Project. The robotics group at LANL is currently working at developing the technologies that address the problems associated with physical mapping. This article describes some of these problems and discusses some of the robotics approaches and engineering tolls applicable to their solution. 7 refs., 8 figs., 1 tab.

  12. Human molecular genetics research at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Falaschi, P A

    1997-01-01

    The ICGEB started its activity in 1987 as a special project of UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organization) and operates now as a fully autonomous International Organization, of which 40 countries are members at present. The mandate of ICGEB is to become a Centre of excellence for research and training in modern biology addressed to the needs of the developing world. The ICGEB consists of two main laboratories, one in Trieste (where the direction of the Centre is also located) and one in New Delhi, plus a network of 30 Affiliated Centres. The Centre operates through: 1) specific research programs of hish scientific content at the Trieste and New Delhi laboratories; 2) long term training through post-doctoral and pre-doctoral fellowships; 3) short term training; 4) collaborative research program, through which the Centre finances research projects of major impact to the need of the Member States; 5) scientific services, namely consultation for scientific programs, distribution of reagents and a bioinformatics network particularly geared to the human genome research. The research on human molecular genetics in particularly active in the Trieste Component and concerns the study at the molecular level of several genes important for human health: control of DNA replication, response to infectious diseases, cardiocirculatory diseases, cystic fibrosis and cancer. The methodologies for developing new diagnostic methods and for developing gene therapy protocols are actively pursued. Through these programs, the member countries have access to state-of-the-art technologies anf know-how essential for the development of the molecular approaches to medicine brought forward by the study of the human genome.

  13. Research on human genetics in Iceland. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    1980-10-31

    Records of the Icelandic Population are being used to investigate the possible inheritance of disabilities and diseases as well as other characters and the effect of environment on man. The progress report of research covers the period 1977 to 1980. The investigation was begun in 1965 by the Genetical Committee of the University of Iceland and the materials used are demographic records from the year 1840 to present and various medical information. The records are being computerized and linked together to make them effective for use in hereditary studies.

  14. Progress report on research on human genetics in Iceland

    SciTech Connect

    1980-10-31

    Records of the Icelandic population are being used to investigate the possible inheritance of disabilities and diseases as well as other characteristics and the effect of environment on man. The progress report of research covers the period from 1977 to 1980. The investigation was begun in 1965 by the Genetical Committee of the University of Iceland and the materials used are demographic records from the year 1840 to present and various medical information. The records are being computerized and linked together to make them effective for use in hereditary studies.

  15. The concept of human dignity in the ethics of genetic research.

    PubMed

    Chan, David K

    2015-05-01

    Despite criticism that dignity is a vague and slippery concept, a number of international guidelines on bioethics have cautioned against research that is contrary to human dignity, with reference specifically to genetic technology. What is the connection between genetic research and human dignity? In this article, I investigate the concept of human dignity in its various historical forms, and examine its status as a moral concept. Unlike Kant's ideal concept of human dignity, the empirical or relational concept takes human dignity as something that is affected by one's circumstances and what others do. I argue that the dignity objection to some forms of genetic research rests on a view of human nature that gives humans a special status in nature - one that is threatened by the potential of genetic research to reduce individuals to their genetic endowment. I distinguish two main philosophical accounts of human nature. One of these, the Aristotelian view, is compatible with the use of genetic technology to help humans realize their inherent potential to a fuller extent.

  16. The New Human Genetics: A Cell Bank Helps Researchers Fight Inherited Disease.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pines, Maya

    Research in human genetics is now expanding rapidly, leading to increasingly precise ways of preventing or treating some of the 2,000 or more inherited disorders that afflict human beings. At the same time, it has produced a wealth of new ideas and techniques which are laying the groundwork for new medical science for the 21st century. Recent work…

  17. On the prevalence of population groups in the human-genetics research literature.

    PubMed

    Birenbaum-Carmeli, D

    2004-03-01

    Population-specific human-genetics research has become commonplace but remains controversial, as its results can affect public and personal perceptions of the ethnic, national, and racial groups studied. Choice of populations for study has generally seemed a function of scientific, logistical, or economic factors. Has the identity of populations studied in the human-genetics research literature varied systematically, and, if it has, in what ways? I searched the PubMed database for population-genetics reports, calculating for each a population score, a genetics score, and a mutation score. Some populations had been studied far more intensively than others. Many of the most frequently studied groups were ethnically defined and politically marginal in their home countries; some of these groups were involved in self-determination struggles. In the mutation-research literature, state-defined Muslim and Mediterranean populations prevailed. Study-population selection may in some cases be explained by, or may complicate, political predicament.

  18. Human genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Carlson, E.A.

    1984-01-01

    This text provides full and balanced coverage of the concepts requisite for a thorough understanding of human genetics. Applications to both the individual and society are integrated throughout the lively and personal narrative, and the essential principles of heredity are clearly presented to prepare students for informed participation in public controversies. High-interest, controversial topics, including recombinant DNA technology, oncogenes, embryo transfer, environmental mutagens and carcinogens, IQ testing, and eugenics encourage understanding of important social issues.

  19. Building capacity for human genetics and genomics research in Trinidad and Tobago

    PubMed Central

    Roach, Allana; Warner, Wayne A.; Llanos, Adana A. M.

    2016-01-01

    Advances in human genetics and genomic sciences and the corresponding explosion of biomedical technologies have deepened current understanding of human health and revolutionized medicine. In developed nations, this has led to marked improvements in disease risk stratification and diagnosis. These advances have also led to targeted intervention strategies aimed at promoting disease prevention, prolonging disease onset, and mitigating symptoms, as in the well-known case of breast cancer and the BRCA1 gene. In contrast, in the developing nation of Trinidad and Tobago, this scientific revolution has not translated into the development and application of effective genomics-based interventions for improving public health. While the reasons for this are multifactorial, the underlying basis may be rooted in the lack of pertinence of internationally driven genomics research to the local public health needs in the country, as well as a lack of relevance of internationally conducted genetics research to the genetic and environmental contexts of the population. Indeed, if Trinidad and Tobago is able to harness substantial public health benefit from genetics/genomics research, then there is a dire need, in the near future, to build local capacity for the conduct and translation of such research. Specifically, it is essential to establish a national human genetics/genomics research agenda in order to build sustainable human capacity through education and knowledge transfer and to generate public policies that will provide the basis for the creation of a mutually beneficial framework (including partnerships with more developed nations) that is informed by public health needs and contextual realities of the nation. PMID:26837529

  20. Building capacity for human genetics and genomics research in Trinidad and Tobago.

    PubMed

    Roach, Allana; Warner, Wayne A; Llanos, Adana A M

    2015-11-01

    Advances in human genetics and genomic sciences and the corresponding explosion of biomedical technologies have deepened current understanding of human health and revolutionized medicine. In developed nations, this has led to marked improvements in disease risk stratification and diagnosis. These advances have also led to targeted intervention strategies aimed at promoting disease prevention, prolonging disease onset, and mitigating symptoms, as in the well-known case of breast cancer and the BRCA1 gene. In contrast, in the developing nation of Trinidad and Tobago, this scientific revolution has not translated into the development and application of effective genomics-based interventions for improving public health. While the reasons for this are multifactorial, the underlying basis may be rooted in the lack of pertinence of internationally driven genomics research to the local public health needs in the country, as well as a lack of relevance of internationally conducted genetics research to the genetic and environmental contexts of the population. Indeed, if Trinidad and Tobago is able to harness substantial public health benefit from genetics/genomics research, then there is a dire need, in the near future, to build local capacity for the conduct and translation of such research. Specifically, it is essential to establish a national human genetics/genomics research agenda in order to build sustainable human capacity through education and knowledge transfer and to generate public policies that will provide the basis for the creation of a mutually beneficial framework (including partnerships with more developed nations) that is informed by public health needs and contextual realities of the nation.

  1. Monkey-based research on human disease: the implications of genetic differences.

    PubMed

    Bailey, Jarrod

    2014-11-01

    Assertions that the use of monkeys to investigate human diseases is valid scientifically are frequently based on a reported 90-93% genetic similarity between the species. Critical analyses of the relevance of monkey studies to human biology, however, indicate that this genetic similarity does not result in sufficient physiological similarity for monkeys to constitute good models for research, and that monkey data do not translate well to progress in clinical practice for humans. Salient examples include the failure of new drugs in clinical trials, the highly different infectivity and pathology of SIV/HIV, and poor extrapolation of research on Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and stroke. The major molecular differences underlying these inter-species phenotypic disparities have been revealed by comparative genomics and molecular biology - there are key differences in all aspects of gene expression and protein function, from chromosome and chromatin structure to post-translational modification. The collective effects of these differences are striking, extensive and widespread, and they show that the superficial similarity between human and monkey genetic sequences is of little benefit for biomedical research. The extrapolation of biomedical data from monkeys to humans is therefore highly unreliable, and the use of monkeys must be considered of questionable value, particularly given the breadth and potential of alternative methods of enquiry that are currently available to scientists. 2014 FRAME.

  2. The role of community review in evaluating the risks of human genetic variation research.

    PubMed

    Foster, M W; Sharp, R R; Freeman, W L; Chino, M; Bernsten, D; Carter, T H

    1999-06-01

    The practicality and moral value of community review of human genetic research has become a focus of debate. Examples from two Native American communities are used to address four aspects of that debate: (1) the value of community review in larger, geographically dispersed populations; (2) the identification of culturally specific risks; (3) the potential conflict between individual and group assessments of research-related risks; and (4) the confusion of social categories with biological categories. Our experiences working with these two communities suggest that: (1) successful community review may require the involvement of private social units (e.g., families); (2) culturally specific implications of genetic research may be identifiable only by community members and are of valid concern in their moral universes; (3) community concerns can be incorporated into existing review mechanisms without necessarily giving communities the power to veto research proposals; and (4) the conflation of social and biological categories presents recruitment problems for genetic studies. These conclusions argue for the use of community review to identify and minimize research-related risks posed by genetic studies. Community review also can assist in facilitating participant recruitment and retention, as well as in developing partnerships between researchers and communities.

  3. Human genetic research databases and biobanks: towards uniform terminology and Australian best practice.

    PubMed

    Chalmers, Don; Nicol, Dianne

    2008-02-01

    This article examines international best practice for the establishment, maintenance and use of human genetic research databases (HGRDs), particularly focusing on large-scale population biobanks, and considers the measures that should be taken in Australia to comply with this best practice. These HGRDs play a pivotal role in basic research aimed at understanding the basis of human disease at the genetic level, and applied research aimed at putting that basic knowledge into practical application. In particular, the large-scale biobanks are vital research tools in the drive to uncover the causes and consequences of human health and disease. Biobanks are being established at regional, national and international levels throughout the world. Although their governance structures are uniformly complex, some best practices are emerging with regard to consent (particularly consent to future research and withdrawal of consent), privacy and data protection and intellectual property ownership and access. Best practices with regard to benefit-sharing are emerging much more slowly. This article reviews these international best practices with the aim of providing guidance for the development of appropriate regulatory structures in Australia.

  4. Genetics of human hydrocephalus

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Michael A.; Rigamonti, Daniele

    2006-01-01

    hydrocephalus. This review summarizes the recent findings on this issue among human and animal models, especially with reference to the molecular genetics, pathological, physiological and cellular studies, and identifies future research directions. PMID:16773266

  5. Genetic research and biobanks.

    PubMed

    Chalmers, Don

    2011-01-01

    Human biobanks, and genetic research databases, as referred to by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), are essential tools for modern biomedical research. Biobanks may consist in collections created in clinical diagnosis (such as pathology tissue samples in hospitals) or collections created for large-scale longitudinal research (such as the UK Biobank). Human tissue collections are regulated by a patchwork of national laws. However, there is an increasing international uniformity in national privacy laws based on 1980s OECD standards. There are similar uniform standards developing in national research ethics guidelines. As biobanks develop collaborations and linkages, international harmonisation of legislation and human research regulation will be required across jurisdictions. It is essential that international public trust is maintained in biobanking research.

  6. The New Human Genetics. How Gene Splicing Helps Researchers Fight Inherited Disease.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pines, Maya

    The science of genetics is perceived to offer hope that a large number of the 3,000 inherited diseases which afflict human beings may be prevented or controlled. This document addresses some of the advances that have been made in this field. It includes an introduction and sections on: "The Beginning of Human Genetics"; "Unlocking the Secrets of…

  7. The use of genetically engineered model systems for research on human aging.

    PubMed

    Lepperdinger, Guenter; Berger, Peter; Breitenbach, Michael; Frohlich, Kai-Uwe; Grillari, Johannes; Grubeck-Loebenstein, Beatrix; Madeo, Frank; Minois, Nadege; Zwerschke, Werner; Jansen-Durr, Pidder

    2008-05-01

    A major goal in the field of aging research is to identify molecular mechanisms of aging at the cellular level, which are anticipated to form the basis for the development of age-associated dysfunctions and diseases in human beings. Recent progress in research into model organisms of aging has allowed determining precise molecular mechanisms and genetic determinants of the aging process, which appear to be conserved in evolution and some of which apply to human aging as well. The consortium of the authors focuses on aging mechanisms at the cellular level, and exploits the potential of genetic analyses in lower eukaryotic model organisms for a better understanding of regulatory pathways implicated in aging processes. We have established a new database (GiSAO), which provides a unique resource for the analysis of genome-wide expression patterns as being regulated by senescence, apoptosis and oxidative stress in our model systems. This has led to the identification of candidate genes, which are being tested for their impact on lifespan regulation in yeast, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and the nematode C. elegans.

  8. Scientific rationality, uncertainty and the governance of human genetics: an interview study with researchers at deCODE genetics.

    PubMed

    Hjörleifsson, Stefán; Schei, Edvin

    2006-07-01

    Technology development in human genetics is fraught with uncertainty, controversy and unresolved moral issues, and industry scientists are sometimes accused of neglecting the implications of their work. The present study was carried out to elicit industry scientists' reflections on the relationship between commercial, scientific and ethical dimensions of present day genetics and the resources needed for robust governance of new technologies. Interviewing scientists of the company deCODE genetics in Iceland, we found that in spite of optimism, the informants revealed ambiguity and uncertainty concerning the use of human genetic technologies for the prevention of common diseases. They concurred that uncritical marketing of scientific success might cause exaggerated public expectations of health benefits from genetics, with the risk of backfiring and causing resistance to genetics in the population. On the other hand, the scientists did not address dilemmas arising from the commercial nature of their own employer. Although the scientists tended to describe public fear as irrational, they identified issues where scepticism might be well founded and explored examples where they, despite expert knowledge, held ambiguous or tentative personal views on the use of predictive genetic technologies. The rationality of science was not seen as sufficient to ensure beneficial governance of new technologies. The reflexivity and suspension of judgement demonstrated in the interviews exemplify productive features of moral deliberation in complex situations. Scientists should take part in dialogues concerning the governance of genetic technologies, acknowledge any vested interests, and use their expertise to highlight, not conceal the technical and moral complexity involved.

  9. Informed Consent Template and Guidelines on the Ethical Practice in Human Genetics and Human Genomic Research; Initiatives of the Universiti Sains Malaysia

    PubMed Central

    Sasongko, Teguh Haryo; Zabidi-Hussin, Zamh; Othman, Nor Hayati; Van Rostenberghe, Hans

    2015-01-01

    Malaysia is advancing and nearly on pace with the international scientific community in human genetics and human genomics research. However, this research poses unique challenges. Although Malaysia already regulates medical genetic services, these regulations are insufficient for coping with the ethical issues emerging from recent genomic technologies. The Universiti Sains Malaysia recently created in-house guidelines and an informed consent template for genetic and genomic research. This article presents these guidelines and the informed consent template and discusses the justification and the background of the initiative. We also propose recommendations pertaining to local social studies and regulatory arrangements. PMID:28223885

  10. Latest Research: Genetic Links

    MedlinePlus

    ... Current Issue Past Issues Feature: Vision Latest Research: Genetic Links Past Issues / Summer 2008 Table of Contents ... laboratories is one way the NEI is expanding genetic testing of eye diseases. Photo courtesy of National ...

  11. Human genetic research, race, ethnicity and the labeling of populations: recommendations based on an interdisciplinary workshop in Japan

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background A challenge in human genome research is how to describe the populations being studied. The use of improper and/or imprecise terms has the potential to both generate and reinforce prejudices and to diminish the clinical value of the research. The issue of population descriptors has not attracted enough academic attention outside North America and Europe. In January 2012, we held a two-day workshop, the first of its kind in Japan, to engage in interdisciplinary dialogue between scholars in the humanities, social sciences, medical sciences, and genetics to begin an ongoing discussion of the social and ethical issues associated with population descriptors. Discussion Through the interdisciplinary dialogue, we confirmed that the issue of race, ethnicity and genetic research has not been extensively discussed in certain Asian communities and other regions. We have found, for example, the continued use of the problematic term, “Mongoloid” or continental terms such as “European,” “African,” and “Asian,” as population descriptors in genetic studies. We, therefore, introduce guidelines for reporting human genetic studies aimed at scientists and researchers in these regions. Conclusion We need to anticipate the various potential social and ethical problems entailed in population descriptors. Scientists have a social responsibility to convey their research findings outside of their communities as accurately as possible, and to consider how the public may perceive and respond to the descriptors that appear in research papers and media articles. PMID:24758583

  12. Human genetic research, race, ethnicity and the labeling of populations: recommendations based on an interdisciplinary workshop in Japan.

    PubMed

    Takezawa, Yasuko; Kato, Kazuto; Oota, Hiroki; Caulfield, Timothy; Fujimoto, Akihiro; Honda, Shunwa; Kamatani, Naoyuki; Kawamura, Shoji; Kawashima, Kohei; Kimura, Ryosuke; Matsumae, Hiromi; Saito, Ayako; Savage, Patrick E; Seguchi, Noriko; Shimizu, Keiko; Terao, Satoshi; Yamaguchi-Kabata, Yumi; Yasukouchi, Akira; Yoneda, Minoru; Tokunaga, Katsushi

    2014-04-23

    A challenge in human genome research is how to describe the populations being studied. The use of improper and/or imprecise terms has the potential to both generate and reinforce prejudices and to diminish the clinical value of the research. The issue of population descriptors has not attracted enough academic attention outside North America and Europe. In January 2012, we held a two-day workshop, the first of its kind in Japan, to engage in interdisciplinary dialogue between scholars in the humanities, social sciences, medical sciences, and genetics to begin an ongoing discussion of the social and ethical issues associated with population descriptors. Through the interdisciplinary dialogue, we confirmed that the issue of race, ethnicity and genetic research has not been extensively discussed in certain Asian communities and other regions. We have found, for example, the continued use of the problematic term, "Mongoloid" or continental terms such as "European," "African," and "Asian," as population descriptors in genetic studies. We, therefore, introduce guidelines for reporting human genetic studies aimed at scientists and researchers in these regions. We need to anticipate the various potential social and ethical problems entailed in population descriptors. Scientists have a social responsibility to convey their research findings outside of their communities as accurately as possible, and to consider how the public may perceive and respond to the descriptors that appear in research papers and media articles.

  13. Human neuroscience at National Institute on Drug Abuse: Implications for genetics research

    SciTech Connect

    Gordon, H.W.

    1994-12-15

    It is becoming clear that there is a genetic component to drug abuse. Family studies, adoption studies, and critical twin studies have all pointed to some genetic vulnerability or risk factors for an individual to abuse psychoactive drugs depending on certain psychopathologies in the biological parents and/or parents` own drug use. The question for the next generation of research at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is to apply the rapidly developing technology in molecular genetics in an effort to determine the candidate genes contributing to the risk. 19 refs.

  14. Human hemoglobin genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Honig, G.R.; Adams, J.G.

    1986-01-01

    This book contains the following 10 chapters: Introduction; The Human Hemoglobins; The Human Globin Genes; Hemoglobin Synthesis and Globin Gene Expression; The Globin Gene Mutations - A. Mechanisms and Classification; The Globin Gene Mutations - B. Their Phenotypes and Clinical Expression; The Genetics of the Human Globin Gene Loci: Formal Genetics and Gene Linkage; The Geographic Distribution of Globin Gene Variation; Labortory Identification, Screening, Education, and Counseling for Abnormal Hemoglobins and Thalassemias; and Approaches to the Treatment of the Hemoglobin Disorders.

  15. Revisiting the case for genetically engineered mouse models in human myelodysplastic syndrome research

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Ting; Kinney, Marsha C.; Scott, Linda M.; Zinkel, Sandra S.

    2015-01-01

    Much-needed attention has been given of late to diseases specifically associated with an expanding elderly population. Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a hematopoietic stem cell-based blood disease, is one of these. The lack of clear understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of this disease has hampered the development of efficacious therapies, especially in the presence of comorbidities. Mouse models could potentially provide new insights into this disease, although primary human MDS cells grow poorly in xenografted mice. This makes genetically engineered murine models a more attractive proposition, although this approach is not without complications. In particular, it is unclear if or how myelodysplasia (abnormal blood cell morphology), a key MDS feature in humans, presents in murine cells. Here, we evaluate the histopathologic features of wild-type mice and 23 mouse models with verified myelodysplasia. We find that certain features indicative of myelodysplasia in humans, such as Howell-Jolly bodies and low neutrophilic granularity, are commonplace in healthy mice, whereas other features are similarly abnormal in humans and mice. Quantitative hematopoietic parameters, such as blood cell counts, are required to distinguish between MDS and related diseases. We provide data that mouse models of MDS can be genetically engineered and faithfully recapitulate human disease. PMID:26077396

  16. Progress and Prospects in Human Genetic Research into Age-Related Hearing Impairment

    PubMed Central

    Sugiura, Saiko; Ueda, Hiromi; Nakashima, Tsutomu

    2014-01-01

    Age-related hearing impairment (ARHI) is a complex, multifactorial disorder that is attributable to confounding intrinsic and extrinsic factors. The degree of impairment shows substantial variation between individuals, as is also observed in the senescence of other functions. This individual variation would seem to refute the stereotypical view that hearing deterioration with age is inevitable and may indicate that there is ample scope for preventive intervention. Genetic predisposition could account for a sizable proportion of interindividual variation. Over the past decade or so, tremendous progress has been made through research into the genetics of various forms of hearing impairment, including ARHI and our knowledge of the complex mechanisms of auditory function has increased substantially. Here, we give an overview of recent investigations aimed at identifying the genetic risk factors involved in ARHI and of what we currently know about its pathophysiology. This review is divided into the following sections: (i) genes causing monogenic hearing impairment with phenotypic similarities to ARHI; (ii) genes involved in oxidative stress, biologic stress responses, and mitochondrial dysfunction; and (iii) candidate genes for senescence, other geriatric diseases, and neurodegeneration. Progress and prospects in genetic research are discussed. PMID:25140308

  17. Genetic studies in alcohol research

    SciTech Connect

    Karp, R.W.

    1994-12-15

    The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) supports research to elucidate the specific genetic factors, now largely unknown, which underlie susceptibility to alcoholism and its medical complications (including fetal alcohol syndrome). Because of the genetic complexity and heterogeneity of alcoholism, identification of the multiple underlying factors will require the development of new study designs and methods of analysis of data from human families. While techniques of genetic analysis of animal behavioral traits (e.g., targeted gene disruption, quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping) are more powerful that those applicable to humans (e.g., linkage and allelic association studies), the validation of animal behaviors as models of aspects of human alcoholism has been problematic. Newly developed methods for mapping QTL influencing animal behavioral traits can not only permit analyses of human family data to be directly informed by the results of animal studies, but can also serve as a novel means of validating animal models of aspects of alcoholism. 55 refs.

  18. Genetics and Intervention Research

    PubMed Central

    Plomin, Robert; Haworth, Claire M.A.

    2014-01-01

    As part of this special section on genetics and behavioral intervention, we discuss the papers by McGue et al. and by Davey Smith. In the second half of our paper, we consider the integration of genetics and intervention research more broadly. The two papers describe ways to use genetic controls to infer causation from correlational (‘observational’) data without intervention. McGue et al. discuss the use of twins discordant for exposure, which is a variant of the co-twin control method. This method can show that the link between an exposure and outcome is not entirely mediated genetically. Davey Smith discusses a method called Mendelian randomization that uses DNA to draw causal inferences without the need for experimental intervention. Despite the possibilities for using genetic controls to infer causation from correlational data in order to attenuate the need for intervention studies, we are most excited about the opportunities for integrating genetics and intervention research, especially as new DNA technologies make it possible to incorporate genetics in any intervention research. PMID:25419226

  19. Twins' injuries: genetic and environmental risks / twin research reports / human interest stories.

    PubMed

    Segal, Nancy L

    2011-04-01

    The relative contributions of genetic and environmental factors to unintentional injuries are of interest to families with young twins. A recent study found that childhood injuries are explained mostly by child-specific environmental factors. Next, twin research reviews of the association between periodontal disease and cancer, secular trends in gestational age and birthweight, and language development in hearing and deaf co-twins are also summarized. Interesting reports of newborn twins, twin-like relationships, twin interactions and missed twin relationships are presented.

  20. Ethics in population-based genetic research.

    PubMed

    DeCamp, Matthew; Sugarman, Jeremy

    2004-01-01

    Population-based genetic research, including genetic epidemiology, shows tremendous potential to elucidate the role of genes as causal factors in complex and common human diseases. Like all research with human subjects, full realization of these benefits requires careful attention to its ethical conduct, establishing an appropriate balance between individual protections and the advancement of scientific and medical knowledge. This article reviews the growing literature on genetics research and ethics to describe some of the fundamental ethical issues in population-based genetics research, including research design, recruitment and informed consent, and dealing with research results. Its focus is on areas where consensus is forming and where future work is needed.

  1. Genetic compendium of 1511 human brains available through the UK Medical Research Council Brain Banks Network Resource

    PubMed Central

    Keogh, Michael J.; Wei, Wei; Wilson, Ian; Coxhead, Jon; Ryan, Sarah; Rollinson, Sara; Griffin, Helen; Kurzawa-Akanbi, Marzena; Santibanez-Koref, Mauro; Talbot, Kevin; Turner, Martin R.; McKenzie, Chris-Anne; Troakes, Claire; Attems, Johannes; Smith, Colin; Al Sarraj, Safa; Morris, Chris M.; Ansorge, Olaf; Pickering-Brown, Stuart; Ironside, James W.; Chinnery, Patrick F.

    2017-01-01

    Given the central role of genetic factors in the pathogenesis of common neurodegenerative disorders, it is critical that mechanistic studies in human tissue are interpreted in a genetically enlightened context. To address this, we performed exome sequencing and copy number variant analysis on 1511 frozen human brains with a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD, n = 289), frontotemporal dementia/amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FTD/ALS, n = 252), Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD, n = 239), Parkinson's disease (PD, n = 39), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB, n = 58), other neurodegenerative, vascular, or neurogenetic disorders (n = 266), and controls with no significant neuropathology (n = 368). Genomic DNA was extracted from brain tissue in all cases before exome sequencing (Illumina Nextera 62 Mb capture) with variants called by FreeBayes; copy number variant (CNV) analysis (Illumina HumanOmniExpress-12 BeadChip); C9orf72 repeat expansion detection; and APOE genotyping. Established or likely pathogenic heterozygous, compound heterozygous, or homozygous variants, together with the C9orf72 hexanucleotide repeat expansions and a copy number gain of APP, were found in 61 brains. In addition to known risk alleles in 349 brains (23.9% of 1461 undergoing exome sequencing), we saw an association between rare variants in GRN and DLB. Rare CNVs were found in <1.5% of brains, including copy number gains of PRPH that were overrepresented in AD. Clinical, pathological, and genetic data are available, enabling the retrieval of specific frozen brains through the UK Medical Research Council Brain Banks Network. This allows direct access to pathological and control human brain tissue based on an individual's genetic architecture, thus enabling the functional validation of known genetic risk factors and potentially pathogenic alleles identified in future studies. PMID:28003435

  2. Genetic Research and Native American Cultural Issues

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Romero, Francine; Bemis, Lynne T.; Burhansstipanov, Linda; Dignan, Mark

    Cultural issues relevant to genetic education and research arc the focus of a new and innovative curriculum being developed for Native American college students and health professionals. Genetic Education for Native Americans (GENA) is funded by the National Human Genome Research Institute of the National Institutes of Health. The goal of the GENA project is to provide a balance of scientific and cultural information about genetic research, genetic testing, and careers in genetics for Native American students. This article describes issues related to the implementation of GENA and provides an example of an innovative approach to teaching about genetic research among Native American populations.

  3. High Points of Human Genetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stern, Curt

    1975-01-01

    Discusses such high points of human genetics as the study of chromosomes, somatic cell hybrids, the population formula: the Hardy-Weinberg Law, biochemical genetics, the single-active X Theory, behavioral genetics and finally how genetics can serve humanity. (BR)

  4. High Points of Human Genetics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stern, Curt

    1975-01-01

    Discusses such high points of human genetics as the study of chromosomes, somatic cell hybrids, the population formula: the Hardy-Weinberg Law, biochemical genetics, the single-active X Theory, behavioral genetics and finally how genetics can serve humanity. (BR)

  5. Genetics for the Human Race

    SciTech Connect

    Myles Axton; Francis Collins; Charles Rotimi; Charmaine Royal; David Goldstein, Daniel Drell; Georgia Dunston; Rick Kittles; Lynn Jorde; Mildred Cho; Joanna Mountain; Ari Patrinos; Neil Risch; Shomarka Keita; Kenneth Kidd; Mark Shriver; Sarah Tishkoff

    2004-11-01

    This supplement has its origins on May 15, 2003, when the National Human Genome Center at Howard University held a small but important workshop in Washington DC. The workshop, Human Genome Variation and 'Race', and this special issue of Nature Genetics were proposed by scientists at Howard University and financially supported by the Genome Programs of the US Department of Energy, through its Office of Science; the Irving Harris Foundation; the National Institutes of Health, through the National Human Genome Research Institute; and Howard University. As summarized by Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, the workshop focused on several key questions: ''What does the current body of scientific information say about the connections among race, ethnicity, genetics and health? What remains unknown? What additional research is needed? How can this information be applied to benefit human health? How might this information be applied in nonmedical settings? How can we adopt policies that will achieve beneficial societal outcomes?'' This supplement, supported by the Department of Energy through a grant to Howard University, contains articles based on the presentations at this workshop.

  6. [Bioethical principles concerning human genetic data].

    PubMed

    Cruz-Coke, Ricardo

    2003-01-01

    UNESCO'S Universal declaration on the human genome and human rights (1997) has been accepted by the international scientific community. To apply these laws, it is necessary to get more specific rules about data regulation, human genetic samples and its derived information in biomedic research. Indeed, genetic material recollection, processing, use and storing, has potential risks over human rights' protection and exercise. The author, member of UNESCO'S intergovernmental Bioethics Committee which approved the final draft in June 2003, has taken part in the writing of the final text of an international declaration about human genetic data, whose abbreviate text is described and commented in this communication.

  7. Human Heredity: Genetic Mechanisms in Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blank, C. E.

    1988-01-01

    Discussed are some of the uncertainties in human genetic mechanisms that are often presented as dogma in Biology textbooks. Presented is a brief historical background and illustrations involving chromosome abnormality in humans and linkage studies in humans. (CW)

  8. Human Heredity: Genetic Mechanisms in Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blank, C. E.

    1988-01-01

    Discussed are some of the uncertainties in human genetic mechanisms that are often presented as dogma in Biology textbooks. Presented is a brief historical background and illustrations involving chromosome abnormality in humans and linkage studies in humans. (CW)

  9. Thoughts on Human Genetics Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Epstein, Charles J.

    1980-01-01

    The director of the Birth Defects Center at the University of California at San Francisco addresses the reasons for developing good ways of teaching human genetics. Genetic counseling is discussed within the context of several case histories. (SA)

  10. Future research directions for evaluating human genetic and cancer risk from environmental exposures.

    PubMed Central

    Albertini, R J; Nicklas, J A; O'Neill, J P

    1996-01-01

    The utility of biomarkers for evaluating the genotoxicity of environmental exposures is well documented. Biomarkers of both exposure and effect provide bases for assessing human-genotoxicant interactions and may be indicative of future disease risk. At present, there is little information on the predictive value of these assays for either a population or the individuals tested. This paper describes some aspects of biomarker assays, the possible use of susceptibility measures in biomonitoring protocols, and the need for evaluation of disease relevance. A population study involving epidemiologists, geneticists, toxicologists, statisticians, and physicians is proposed to determine the disease relevance of these biomarkers. PMID:8781373

  11. Genetics and recent human evolution.

    PubMed

    Templeton, Alan R

    2007-07-01

    Starting with "mitochondrial Eve" in 1987, genetics has played an increasingly important role in studies of the last two million years of human evolution. It initially appeared that genetic data resolved the basic models of recent human evolution in favor of the "out-of-Africa replacement" hypothesis in which anatomically modern humans evolved in Africa about 150,000 years ago, started to spread throughout the world about 100,000 years ago, and subsequently drove to complete genetic extinction (replacement) all other human populations in Eurasia. Unfortunately, many of the genetic studies on recent human evolution have suffered from scientific flaws, including misrepresenting the models of recent human evolution, focusing upon hypothesis compatibility rather than hypothesis testing, committing the ecological fallacy, and failing to consider a broader array of alternative hypotheses. Once these flaws are corrected, there is actually little genetic support for the out-of-Africa replacement hypothesis. Indeed, when genetic data are used in a hypothesis-testing framework, the out-of-Africa replacement hypothesis is strongly rejected. The model of recent human evolution that emerges from a statistical hypothesis-testing framework does not correspond to any of the traditional models of human evolution, but it is compatible with fossil and archaeological data. These studies also reveal that any one gene or DNA region captures only a small part of human evolutionary history, so multilocus studies are essential. As more and more loci became available, genetics will undoubtedly offer additional insights and resolutions of human evolution.

  12. Regulatory aspects of genetic research with residual human tissue: effective and efficient data coding.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Marjanka K; Vermeulen, Eric; Tollenaar, Rob A E M; Van't Veer, Laura J; van Leeuwen, Flora E

    2009-09-01

    In a large retrospective cohort of breast cancer patients, BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline mutations were analysed in DNA isolated from residual paraffin-embedded tissue samples. Because it was not feasible to ask individual for informed consent, a data and DNA coding protocol, based on the Dutch 'Code of Conduct', was developed. The corner stone of the protocol is that a trusted third party, in our case a notary, keeps the coding keys of clinical data and DNA. Because (re)linkage of the combined coded clinical and genotyping data (BRCA1/2) is only possible through the notary's keys, these can be considered to be comparable to anonymised data at the level of the researcher. Issues around retrospective genotyping of allegedly high-risk mutations and the coding procedure itself are discussed. Our protocol is an appropriate solution to safeguard the privacy of patients when using residual tissue or DNA of patients. Importantly, the coding procedure also allows re-linkage of new genotyping data or extended patient follow-up data to the valuable coded dataset.

  13. Genetic research in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Delone, N. L.; Antipov, V. V.; Ilyin, Ye. A.

    1988-01-01

    The role of the genetic apparatus in the adaptation of the organism to conditions of weightlessness is studied. The investigation includes studies at the gene, chromosome, cell, tissue, and organism levels, as well as studies at the population level.

  14. Genetic Research on Biospecimens Poses Minimal Risk

    PubMed Central

    Wendler, David S.; Rid, Annette

    2014-01-01

    Genetic research on human biospecimens is increasingly common. Yet, debate continues over the level of risk that this research poses to sample donors. Some argue that genetic research on biospecimens poses minimal risk; others argue that it poses greater than minimal risk and therefore needs additional requirements and limitations. This debate raises concern that some donors are not receiving appropriate protection or, conversely, that valuable research is being subject to unnecessary requirements and limitations. The present paper attempts to address this concern using the widely-endorsed ‘risks of daily life’ standard. The three extant versions of this standard all suggest that, with proper measures in place to protect donor confidentiality, most genetic research on human biospecimens poses minimal risk to donors. PMID:25530152

  15. Genetic Research and Health Disparities

    PubMed Central

    Sankar, Pamela; Cho, Mildred K.; Condit, Celeste M.; Hunt, Linda M.; Koenig, Barbara; Marshall, Patricia; Lee, Sandra Soo-Jin; Spicer, Paul

    2008-01-01

    Alleviating health disparities in the United States is a goal with broad support. Medical research undertaken to achieve this goal typically adopts the well-established perspective that racial discrimination and poverty are the major contributors to unequal health status. However, the suggestion is increasingly made that genetic research also has a significant role to play in alleviating this problem, which likely overstates the importance of genetics as a factor in health disparities. Overemphasis on genetics as a major explanatory factor in health disparities could lead researchers to miss factors that contribute to disparities more substantially and may also reinforce racial stereotyping, which may contribute to disparities in the first place. Arguments that promote genetics research as a way to help alleviate health disparities are augmented by several factors, including research funding initiatives and the distinct demographic patterns of health disparities in the United States. PMID:15213210

  16. Blending genetics and sociocultural historical inquiry: ethics, culture, and human subjects protection in international cross cultural research.

    PubMed

    Sampson, Deborah A; Caldwell, Dennis; Taylor, Andre D; Taylor, Jacquelyn Y

    2013-03-01

    In this paper, we examine the implementation and difficulties when conducting genetics research in a rural, traditional West African culture within the frame of the United States' grounded research ethics. Research challenges are highlighted by Western researchers following U.S. Institutional Review Board (IRB) guidelines and practices in a non-Western country. IRB concepts are culture bound in Western ideals that may not have synchronicity and compatibility with non-Western cultures. Differences in sociocultural norms, traditions, language, and geography were influencing factors that can affect application of IRB principles. Suggestions for change are offered, which will potentially aid researchers considering application of IRB requirements when conducting research in non-Westernized, non-industrialized countries.

  17. Blending Genetics and Sociocultural Historical Inquiry: Ethics, Culture, and Human Subjects Protection in International Cross Cultural Research

    PubMed Central

    Sampson, Deborah A.; Caldwell, Dennis; Taylor, Andre D.; Taylor, Jacquelyn Y.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, we examine the implementation and difficulties when conducting genetics research in a rural, traditional West African culture within the frame of the United States’ grounded research ethics. Research challenges are highlighted by Western researchers following U.S. Institutional Review Board (IRB) guidelines and practices in a non-Western country. IRB concepts are culture bound in Western ideals that may not have synchronicity and compatibility with non-Western cultures. Differences in sociocultural norms, traditions, language, and geography were influencing factors that can affect application of IRB principles. Suggestions for change are offered, which will potentially aid researchers considering application of IRB requirements when conducting research in non-Westernized, non-industrialized countries. PMID:23482512

  18. Basic Genetics: A Human Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biological Sciences Curriculum Study, Colorado Springs, CO. Center for Education in Human and Medical Genetics.

    This document (which has the form of a magazine) provides a variety of articles, stories, editorials, letters, interviews, and other types of magazine features (such as book reviews) which focus on human genetics. In addition to providing information about the principles of genetics, nearly all of the sections in the "magazine" address moral,…

  19. Basic Genetics: A Human Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biological Sciences Curriculum Study, Colorado Springs, CO. Center for Education in Human and Medical Genetics.

    This document (which has the form of a magazine) provides a variety of articles, stories, editorials, letters, interviews, and other types of magazine features (such as book reviews) which focus on human genetics. In addition to providing information about the principles of genetics, nearly all of the sections in the "magazine" address moral,…

  20. The Human Gene Mutation Database: towards a comprehensive repository of inherited mutation data for medical research, genetic diagnosis and next-generation sequencing studies.

    PubMed

    Stenson, Peter D; Mort, Matthew; Ball, Edward V; Evans, Katy; Hayden, Matthew; Heywood, Sally; Hussain, Michelle; Phillips, Andrew D; Cooper, David N

    2017-03-27

    The Human Gene Mutation Database (HGMD(®)) constitutes a comprehensive collection of published germline mutations in nuclear genes that underlie, or are closely associated with human inherited disease. At the time of writing (March 2017), the database contained in excess of 203,000 different gene lesions identified in over 8000 genes manually curated from over 2600 journals. With new mutation entries currently accumulating at a rate exceeding 17,000 per annum, HGMD represents de facto the central unified gene/disease-oriented repository of heritable mutations causing human genetic disease used worldwide by researchers, clinicians, diagnostic laboratories and genetic counsellors, and is an essential tool for the annotation of next-generation sequencing data. The public version of HGMD ( http://www.hgmd.org ) is freely available to registered users from academic institutions and non-profit organisations whilst the subscription version (HGMD Professional) is available to academic, clinical and commercial users under license via QIAGEN Inc.

  1. Human genetic databases and liberty.

    PubMed

    Adalsteinsson, Ragnar

    2004-01-01

    This paper examines an act of the Icelandic Parliament on health-sector databases. Both the legislation itself and the manner in which it was presented by the Government to the Parliament and the general public raise various questions about democratic parliamentary procedures, community consultation, autonomy, privacy, professional confidence, control of health data in hospitals and business relationships between medical doctors and biotechnology corporations. A major question to be asked is: In whose interest is it that such sensitive data are handed over to for-profit corporations? Furthermore, is it within the authority of the legislature to authorize politically appointed boards of health institutes to transfer such data without the direct informed consent of the patient and without the relevant physicians' having a say? Does experience teach us to entrust private companies with sensitive personal data? Should the Government be involved in the research policy-making of the biotechnology companies that have been given access to the genetic data of a population, or should the profit motive be the sole deciding influence? That is, should the interest of the shareholders of the companies prevail over the interest of underprivileged groups who are most in need of new methods or medicine to alleviate their situation due to incurable diseases? Or is the invisible hand of the market the only competent decision-maker? Finally, will the proliferation of databases containing sensitive personal data, such as human genetic data, limit our personal liberty?

  2. Genetic heterogeneity in human disease.

    PubMed

    McClellan, Jon; King, Mary-Claire

    2010-04-16

    Strong evidence suggests that rare mutations of severe effect are responsible for a substantial portion of complex human disease. Evolutionary forces generate vast genetic heterogeneity in human illness by introducing many new variants in each generation. Current sequencing technologies offer the possibility of finding rare disease-causing mutations and the genes that harbor them. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Rethinking Our Public Health Genetics Research Paradigm

    PubMed Central

    El-Sayed, Abdulrahman M.; Koenen, Karestan C.

    2013-01-01

    Since the sequencing of the human genome, tremendous resources have been dedicated to understanding how genetic determinants may drive the production of disease. Despite some successes, the promise of genetics research in these areas remains largely unrealized. The focus on isolating individual (or clusters of) genes that may be associated with narrowly defined phenotypes in large part explains this discrepancy. In particular, efforts to identify genotypes associated with narrow phenotypes force the field to use study designs that capitalize on homogeneous samples to minimize the potential for competing influences or confounders, which imposes important limitations on understanding the role of genes in human health. We argue that a population health genetics that incorporates genetics into large, multiwave, multilevel cohorts has the best potential to clarify how genes, in combination and with the environment, jointly influence population health. PMID:23927512

  4. Contemporary Genetics for Gender Researchers: Not Your Grandma's Genetics Anymore

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salk, Rachel H.; Hyde, Janet S.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past century, much of genetics was deterministic, and feminist researchers framed justified criticisms of genetics research. However, over the past two decades, genetics research has evolved remarkably and has moved far from earlier deterministic approaches. Our article provides a brief primer on modern genetics, emphasizing contemporary…

  5. Contemporary Genetics for Gender Researchers: Not Your Grandma's Genetics Anymore

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salk, Rachel H.; Hyde, Janet S.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past century, much of genetics was deterministic, and feminist researchers framed justified criticisms of genetics research. However, over the past two decades, genetics research has evolved remarkably and has moved far from earlier deterministic approaches. Our article provides a brief primer on modern genetics, emphasizing contemporary…

  6. The Tricentennial People: Human Applications of the New Genetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Neumann, Marguerite, Ed.

    This symposium focused on the social, political, and ethical implications of the current trends in genetic research. Four papers are presented here along with transcripts of the accompanying discussions. The topics include: (1) genetics and the biological basis of the human condition; (2) the pros and cons of genetic counseling; (3) genetics and…

  7. Concise review: new paradigms for Down syndrome research using induced pluripotent stem cells: tackling complex human genetic disease.

    PubMed

    Briggs, James A; Mason, Elizabeth A; Ovchinnikov, Dmitry A; Wells, Christine A; Wolvetang, Ernst J

    2013-03-01

    Down syndrome (DS) is a complex developmental disorder with diverse pathologies that affect multiple tissues and organ systems. Clear mechanistic description of how trisomy of chromosome 21 gives rise to most DS pathologies is currently lacking and is limited to a few examples of dosage-sensitive trisomic genes with large phenotypic effects. The recent advent of cellular reprogramming technology offers a promising way forward, by allowing derivation of patient-derived human cell types in vitro. We present general strategies that integrate genomics technologies and induced pluripotent stem cells to identify molecular networks driving different aspects of DS pathogenesis and describe experimental approaches to validate the causal requirement of candidate network defects for particular cellular phenotypes. This overall approach should be applicable to many poorly understood complex human genetic diseases, whose pathogenic mechanisms might involve the combined effects of many genes.

  8. An overview of human genetic privacy.

    PubMed

    Shi, Xinghua; Wu, Xintao

    2017-01-01

    The study of human genomics is becoming a Big Data science, owing to recent biotechnological advances leading to availability of millions of personal genome sequences, which can be combined with biometric measurements from mobile apps and fitness trackers, and of human behavior data monitored from mobile devices and social media. With increasing research opportunities for integrative genomic studies through data sharing, genetic privacy emerges as a legitimate yet challenging concern that needs to be carefully addressed, not only for individuals but also for their families. In this paper, we present potential genetic privacy risks and relevant ethics and regulations for sharing and protecting human genomics data. We also describe the techniques for protecting human genetic privacy from three broad perspectives: controlled access, differential privacy, and cryptographic solutions. © 2016 New York Academy of Sciences.

  9. Association methods in human genetics.

    PubMed

    Langefeld, Carl D; Fingerlin, Tasha E

    2007-01-01

    Genetic association studies are increasingly used in the search for susceptibility variants for human traits. While many of the statistical tools available for such studies are well established, the field is advancing rapidly, as biological and technological developments allow investigators to generate vast amounts of detailed genetic data. This chapter gives an overview of the statistical evaluation of genetic data in both unrelated individuals and families. A brief introduction to fundamental population genetics concepts is followed by detailed examinations of measures of linkage disequilibrium and single-marker and haplotype association tests. Emphasis is given to the historical development of family-based tests to provide the context for more recent advancements. The chapter concludes with a discussion of design strategies for genetic association studies with dense genotyping of hundreds or thousands of markers, such as those planned for follow up of a linkage-candidate region or genome-wide association studies.

  10. The old and new face of craniofacial research: How animal models inform human craniofacial genetic and clinical data.

    PubMed

    Van Otterloo, Eric; Williams, Trevor; Artinger, Kristin Bruk

    2016-07-15

    The craniofacial skeletal structures that comprise the human head develop from multiple tissues that converge to form the bones and cartilage of the face. Because of their complex development and morphogenesis, many human birth defects arise due to disruptions in these cellular populations. Thus, determining how these structures normally develop is vital if we are to gain a deeper understanding of craniofacial birth defects and devise treatment and prevention options. In this review, we will focus on how animal model systems have been used historically and in an ongoing context to enhance our understanding of human craniofacial development. We do this by first highlighting "animal to man" approaches; that is, how animal models are being utilized to understand fundamental mechanisms of craniofacial development. We discuss emerging technologies, including high throughput sequencing and genome editing, and new animal repository resources, and how their application can revolutionize the future of animal models in craniofacial research. Secondly, we highlight "man to animal" approaches, including the current use of animal models to test the function of candidate human disease variants. Specifically, we outline a common workflow deployed after discovery of a potentially disease causing variant based on a select set of recent examples in which human mutations are investigated in vivo using animal models. Collectively, these topics will provide a pipeline for the use of animal models in understanding human craniofacial development and disease for clinical geneticist and basic researchers alike. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Immunology taught by human genetics.

    PubMed

    Casanova, Jean-Laurent; Abel, Laurent; Quintana-Murci, Lluis

    2013-01-01

    Human genetic studies are rarely conducted for immunological purposes. Instead, they are typically driven by medical and evolutionary goals, such as understanding the predisposition or resistance to infectious or inflammatory diseases, the pathogenesis of such diseases, and human evolution in the context of the long-standing relationships between humans and their commensal and environmental microbes. However, the dissection of these experiments of Nature has also led to major immunological advances. In this review, we draw on some of the immunological lessons learned in the three branches of human molecular genetics most relevant to immunology: clinical genetics, epidemiological genetics, and evolutionary genetics. We argue that human genetics has become a new frontier not only for timely studies of specific features of human immunity, but also for defining general principles of immunity. These studies teach us about immunity as it occurs under "natural" conditions, through the transition from the almost complete wilderness that existed worldwide until about a century ago to the current unevenly distributed medically shaped environment. Hygiene, vaccines, antibiotics, and surgery have considerably decreased the burden of infection, but these interventions have been available only recently, so have yet to have a major impact on patterns of genomic diversity, making it possible to carry out unbiased evolutionary studies at the population level. Clinical genetic studies of childhood phenotypes have not been blurred by modern medicine either. Instead, medical advances have actually facilitated such studies, by making it possible for children with life-threatening infections to survive. In addition, the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases have increased life expectancy at birth from ∼20 yr to ∼80 yr, providing unique opportunities to study the genetic basis of immunological phenomena against which there is no natural counterselection, such as

  12. Genetic aspects of human congenital diaphragmatic hernia

    PubMed Central

    Pober, BR

    2010-01-01

    Congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) is a common major malformation affecting 1/3000–1/4000 births, which continues to be associated with significant perinatal mortality. Much current research is focused on elucidating the genetics and pathophysiology contributing to CDH to develop more effective therapies. The latest data suggest that many cases of CDH are genetically determined and also indicate that CDH is etiologically heterogeneous. The present review will provide a brief summary of diaphragm development and model organism work most relevant to human CDH and will primarily describe important human phenotypes associated with CDH and also provide recommendations for diagnostic evaluation of a fetus or infant with CDH. PMID:18510546

  13. American Society of Human Genetics

    MedlinePlus

    ... Deficiency October 20, 2016 Parents of Children with Cancer Value Sequencing Results, Even if Non-actionable October 20, 2016 The American Society of Human Genetics, Incorporated 9650 Rockville Pike • Bethesda, Maryland 20814 society@ashg.org • 1-866-HUM-GENE • (301) 634-7300 Privacy Policy

  14. Human genetic information: the legal implications.

    PubMed

    Brahams, D

    1990-01-01

    This paper provides a brief summary of some of the key legal issues raised by human genetic information and research as viewed from a British common law standpoint. The law is basically reactive rather than prospective and problems posed by futuristic medico-scientific discoveries are likely to be dealt with by reference to established legal principles and analogies made with decided cases. The acquisition and research into human genetic information in the form of DNA profiling may have wide-ranging legal implications. Human genetic information may provide an evidential tool in the legal process when the identity of a specific individual or his family connections and relationships are called into question. It may also pose problems of confidentiality which could conflict with a duty of disclosure. In the future it may be possible to identify a propensity to develop a disease which may be seriously disabling or terminal long before any symptoms are detectable. This sensitive information could be of considerable interest to any prospective employer, insurer, marriage partner or family member and is of serious concern to the individual himself. How far should or could such information lawfully be made available and to whom? Legal debates are also likely to focus on ownership of human genetic information, the patenting of techniques to unravel it, and therapies and medicines developed therefrom. The law will be invoked to safeguard any intellectual property which may exist and to patent any inventive steps in the field.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  15. Current issues in medically assisted reproduction and genetics in Europe: research, clinical practice, ethics, legal issues and policy. European Society of Human Genetics and European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology.

    PubMed

    Harper, Joyce C; Geraedts, Joep; Borry, Pascal; Cornel, Martina C; Dondorp, Wybo; Gianaroli, Luca; Harton, Gary; Milachich, Tanya; Kääriäinen, Helena; Liebaers, Inge; Morris, Michael; Sequeiros, Jorge; Sermon, Karen; Shenfield, Françoise; Skirton, Heather; Soini, Sirpa; Spits, Claudia; Veiga, Anna; Vermeesch, Joris Robert; Viville, Stéphane; de Wert, Guido; Macek, Milan

    2013-11-01

    In March 2005, a group of experts from the European Society of Human Genetics and European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology met to discuss the interface between genetics and assisted reproductive technology (ART), and published an extended background paper, recommendations and two Editorials. Seven years later, in March 2012, a follow-up interdisciplinary workshop was held, involving representatives of both professional societies, including experts from the European Union Eurogentest2 Coordination Action Project. The main goal of this meeting was to discuss developments at the interface between clinical genetics and ARTs. As more genetic causes of reproductive failure are now recognised and an increasing number of patients undergo testing of their genome before conception, either in regular health care or in the context of direct-to-consumer testing, the need for genetic counselling and preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) may increase. Preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) thus far does not have evidence from randomised clinical trials to substantiate that the technique is both effective and efficient. Whole-genome sequencing may create greater challenges both in the technological and interpretational domains, and requires further reflection about the ethics of genetic testing in ART and PGD/PGS. Diagnostic laboratories should be reporting their results according to internationally accepted accreditation standards (International Standards Organisation - ISO 15189). Further studies are needed in order to address issues related to the impact of ART on epigenetic reprogramming of the early embryo. The legal landscape regarding assisted reproduction is evolving but still remains very heterogeneous and often contradictory. The lack of legal harmonisation and uneven access to infertility treatment and PGD/PGS fosters considerable cross-border reproductive care in Europe and beyond. The aim of this paper is to complement previous publications and provide

  16. Human Research Risk Management

    NASA Image and Video Library

    Crew health and performance is critical to successful human exploration beyond low Earth orbit. The Human Research Program (HRP) investigates and mitigates the highest risks to human health and per...

  17. Human research subjects as human research workers.

    PubMed

    Lynch, Holly Fernandez

    2014-01-01

    Biomedical research involving human subjects has traditionally been treated as a unique endeavor, presenting special risks and demanding special protections. But in several ways, the regulatory scheme governing human subjects research is counter-intuitively less protective than the labor and employment laws applicable to many workers. This Article relies on analogical and legal reasoning to demonstrate that this should not be the case; in a number of ways, human research subjects ought to be fundamentally recast as human research workers. Like other workers protected under worklaw, biomedical research subjects often have interests that diverge from those in positions of control but little bargaining power for change. Bearing these important similarities in mind, the question becomes whether there is any good reason to treat subjects and protected workers differently as a matter of law. With regard to unrestricted payment, eligibility for a minimum wage, compensation for injury, and rights to engage in concerted activity, the answer is no and human subjects regulations ought to be revised accordingly.

  18. PATENTS IN GENOMICS AND HUMAN GENETICS

    PubMed Central

    Cook-Deegan, Robert; Heaney, Christopher

    2010-01-01

    Genomics and human genetics are scientifically fundamental and commercially valuable. These fields grew to prominence in an era of growth in government and nonprofit research funding, and of even greater growth of privately funded research and development in biotechnology and pharmaceuticals. Patents on DNA technologies are a central feature of this story, illustrating how patent law adapts---and sometimes fails to adapt---to emerging genomic technologies. In instrumentation and for therapeutic proteins, patents have largely played their traditional role of inducing investment in engineering and product development, including expensive postdiscovery clinical research to prove safety and efficacy. Patents on methods and DNA sequences relevant to clinical genetic testing show less evidence of benefits and more evidence of problems and impediments, largely attributable to university exclusive licensing practices. Whole-genome sequencing will confront uncertainty about infringing granted patents but jurisprudence trends away from upholding the broadest and potentially most troublesome patent claims. PMID:20590431

  19. Gene therapy for human genetic disease?

    PubMed

    Friedmann, T; Roblin, R

    1972-03-03

    In our view, gene therapy may ameliorate some human genetic diseases in the future. For this reason, we believe that research directed at the development of techniques for gene therapy should continue. For the foreseeable future, however, we oppose any further attempts at gene therapy in human patients because (i) our understanding of such basic processes as gene regulation and genetic recombination in human cells is inadequate; (ii) our understanding of the details of the relation between the molecular defect and the disease state is rudimentary for essentially all genetic diseases; and (iii) we have no information on the short-range and long-term side effects of gene therapy. We therefore propose that a sustained effort be made to formulate a complete set of ethicoscientific criteria to guide the development and clinical application of gene therapy techniques. Such an endeavor could go a long way toward ensuring that gene therapy is used in humans only in those instances where it will prove beneficial, and toward preventing its misuse through premature application. Two recent papers have provided new demonstrations of directed genetic modification of mammalian cells. Munyon et al. (44) restored the ability to synthesize the enzyme thymidine kinase to thymidine kinase-deficient mouse cells by infection with ultraviolet-irradiated herpes simplex virus. In their experiments the DNA from herpes simplex virus, which contains a gene coding for thymidine kinase, may have formed a hereditable association with the mouse cells. Merril et al. (45) reported that treatment of fibroblasts from patients with galactosemia with exogenous DNA caused increased activity of a missing enzyme, alpha-D-galactose-l-phosphate uridyltransferase. They also provided some evidence that the change persisted after subculturing the treated cells. If this latter report can be confirmed, the feasibility of directed genetic modification of human cells would be clearly demonstrated, considerably

  20. Genetic aspects of human obesity.

    PubMed

    Larder, Rachel; Lim, Chung Thong; Coll, Anthony P

    2014-01-01

    Obesity and its related metabolic consequences represent a major public health problem. Huge changes within the environment have undoubtedly contributed to the increased prevalence of obesity but genetic factors are also critical in determining an individual's predisposition to gain weight. The last two decades have seen a huge increase in the understanding of the mechanisms controlling appetitive behavior, body composition, and energy expenditure. Many regions throughout the central nervous system play critical roles in these processes but the hypothalamus, in particular, receives and orchestrates a variety of signals to bring about coordinated changes in energy balance. Reviewing data from human genetic and model organism studies, we consider how disruptions of hypothalamic pathways evolved to maintain energy homeostasis and go on to cause obesity. We highlight ongoing technological developments which continue to lead to novel insights and discuss how this increased knowledge may lead to effective therapeutic interventions in the future.

  1. Gordon Research Conference on Genetic Toxicology

    SciTech Connect

    Project Director Penelope Jeggo

    2003-02-15

    Genetic toxicology represents a study of the genetic damage that a cell can incur, the agents that induce such damage, the damage response mechanisms available to cells and organisms, and the potential consequences of such damage. Genotoxic agents are abundant in the environment and are also induced endogenously. The consequences of such damage can include carcinogenesis and teratogenesis. An understanding of genetic toxicology is essential to carry out risk evaluations of the impact of genotoxic agents and to assess how individual genetic differences influence the response to genotoxic damage. In recent years, the importance of maintaining genomic stability has become increasingly recognized, in part by the realization that failure of the damage response mechanisms underlies many, if not all, cancer incidence. The importance of these mechanisms is also underscored by their remarkable conservation between species, allowing the study of simple organisms to provide significant input into our understanding of the underlying mechanisms. It has also become clear that the damage response mechanisms interface closely with other aspects of cellular metabolism including replication, transcription and cell cycle regulation. Moreover, defects in many of these mechanisms, as observed for example in ataxia telangiectasia patients, confer disorders with associated developmental abnormalities demonstrating their essential roles during growth and development. In short, while a decade ago, a study of the impact of DNA damage was seen as a compartmentalized area of cellular research, it is now appreciated to lie at the centre of an array of cellular responses of crucial importance to human health. Consequently, this has become a dynamic and rapidly advancing area of research. The Genetic Toxicology Gordon Research Conference is biannual with an evolving change in the emphasis of the meetings. From evaluating the nature of genotoxic chemicals, which lay at the centre of the early

  2. Xenopus Research: Metamorphosed by Genetics and Genomics

    PubMed Central

    Harland, Richard M.; Grainger, Robert M.

    2011-01-01

    Research using Xenopus takes advantage of large, abundant eggs, and readily manipulated embryos in addition to conserved cellular, developmental and genomic organization with mammals. Research on Xenopus has defined key principles of gene regulation and signal transduction, embryonic induction, morphogenesis and patterning as well as cell cycle regulation. Genomic and genetic advances in this system, including development of Xenopus tropicalis as a genetically tractable complement to the widely used Xenopus laevis, capitalize on the classical strengths and wealth of achievements. These attributes provide the tools to tackle the complex biological problems of the new century, including cellular reprogramming, organogenesis, regeneration, gene regulatory networks and protein interactions controlling growth and development, all of which provide insights into a multitude of human diseases and their potential treatments. PMID:21963197

  3. [The Human Genome Project, genetic viability and genetic epidemiology].

    PubMed

    Hagymási, Krisztina; Tulassay, Zsolt

    2005-12-18

    The goal of the Human Genome Project to elucidate the complete sequence of the human genome has been achieved. The aims of the "post-genome" era are explaining the genetic information, characterisation of functional elements encoded in the human genome and mapping the human genetic variability as well. Two unrelated human beings also share 99.9% of their genomic sequence. The difference of 0.1% is the result of genetic polymorphisms: single nucleotide polymorphisms, repetitive sequences and insertion/deletion. The genetic differences, coupled with environmental exposures will determine the phenotypic variation we observe in health or disease. The disease-causing genetic variants can be identified by linkage analysis or association studies. The knowledge of human genome and application of multiple biomarkers will improve our ability to identify individuals at risk, so that preventive interventions can be applied, earlier diagnosis can be made and treatment can be optimized.

  4. Human Research Program Opportunities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kundrot, Craig E.

    2014-01-01

    The goal of HRP is to provide human health and performance countermeasures, knowledge, technologies, and tools to enable safe, reliable, and productive human space exploration. The Human Research Program was designed to meet the needs of human space exploration, and understand and reduce the risk to crew health and performance in exploration missions.

  5. Human Genetics: Educational Resources for the Classroom.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greendale, Karen; And Others

    1982-01-01

    Potential sources of information and assistance on human genetics are identified, including a brief description of the National Clearinghouse for Human Genetic Diseases, genetic service centers, voluntary groups, state programs, commercial procedures, workshops, speakers, curriculum development aids, and general references. (DC)

  6. Human Genetics: Educational Resources for the Classroom.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greendale, Karen; And Others

    1982-01-01

    Potential sources of information and assistance on human genetics are identified, including a brief description of the National Clearinghouse for Human Genetic Diseases, genetic service centers, voluntary groups, state programs, commercial procedures, workshops, speakers, curriculum development aids, and general references. (DC)

  7. [Quality assurance in human genetic testing].

    PubMed

    Stuhrmann-Spangenberg, Manfred

    2015-02-01

    Advances in technical developments of genetic diagnostics for more than 50 years, as well as the fact that human genetic testing is usually performed only once in a lifetime, with additional impact for blood relatives, are determining the extraordinary importance of quality assurance in human genetic testing. Abidance of laws, directives, and guidelines plays a major role. This article aims to present the major laws, directives, and guidelines with respect to quality assurance of human genetic testing, paying careful attention to internal and external quality assurance. The information on quality assurance of human genetic testing was obtained through a web-based search of the web pages that are referred to in this article. Further information was retrieved from publications in the German Society of Human Genetics and through a PubMed-search using term quality + assurance + genetic + diagnostics. The most important laws, directives, and guidelines for quality assurance of human genetic testing are the gene diagnostics law (GenDG), the directive of the Federal Medical Council for quality control of clinical laboratory analysis (RiliBÄK), and the S2K guideline for human genetic diagnostics and counselling. In addition, voluntary accreditation under DIN EN ISO 15189:2013 offers a most recommended contribution towards quality assurance of human genetic testing. Legal restraints on quality assurance of human genetic testing as mentioned in § 5 GenDG are fulfilled once RiliBÄK requirements are followed.

  8. Competent human research personnel.

    PubMed

    Arford, Patricia H; Knowles, Marilyn B; Sneed, Nancee V

    2008-12-01

    The process of conducting human research is highly regulated, rigorous, detailed oriented, potentially harmful, and, hopefully, beneficial. Health professionals learn how to critique, design, analyze, and apply human research but have minimal education in how to conduct human research. Successful completion of a 24-hour course was mandated for research support personnel to enhance the protection of human subjects, improve the integrity of data collected, and ensure cost-effective results. Routine audits demonstrated that the course substantially improved the documentation of the informed consent process, source documentation, protocol adherence, and regulatory compliance.

  9. The Human as an Experimental System in Molecular Genetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Ray; Caskey, C. Thomas

    1988-01-01

    Discusses insights discovered from research into human biology that are raising possibilities for therapy, prevention of disease, and challenges to society in the form of ethical decisions about the appropriate application of genetic information. (Author/RT)

  10. The Human as an Experimental System in Molecular Genetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Ray; Caskey, C. Thomas

    1988-01-01

    Discusses insights discovered from research into human biology that are raising possibilities for therapy, prevention of disease, and challenges to society in the form of ethical decisions about the appropriate application of genetic information. (Author/RT)

  11. Genetics of human metabolism: an update

    PubMed Central

    Kastenmüller, Gabi; Raffler, Johannes; Gieger, Christian; Suhre, Karsten

    2015-01-01

    Genome-wide association studies with metabolomics (mGWAS) identify genetically influenced metabotypes (GIMs), their ensemble defining the heritable part of every human's metabolic individuality. Knowledge of genetic variation in metabolism has many applications of biomedical and pharmaceutical interests, including the functional understanding of genetic associations with clinical end points, design of strategies to correct dysregulations in metabolic disorders and the identification of genetic effect modifiers of metabolic disease biomarkers. Furthermore, it has been shown that GIMs provide testable hypotheses for functional genomics and metabolomics and for the identification of novel gene functions and metabolite identities. mGWAS with growing sample sizes and increasingly complex metabolic trait panels are being conducted, allowing for more comprehensive and systems-based downstream analyses. The generated large datasets of genetic associations can now be mined by the biomedical research community and provide valuable resources for hypothesis-driven studies. In this review, we provide a brief summary of the key aspects of mGWAS, followed by an update of recently published mGWAS. We then discuss new approaches of integrating and exploring mGWAS results and finish by presenting selected applications of GIMs in recent studies. PMID:26160913

  12. Reverse Genetics in Ecological Research

    PubMed Central

    Schwachtje, Jens; Kutschbach, Susan; Baldwin, Ian T.

    2008-01-01

    By precisely manipulating the expression of individual genetic elements thought to be important for ecological performance, reverse genetics has the potential to revolutionize plant ecology. However, untested concerns about possible side-effects of the transformation technique, caused by Agrobacterium infection and tissue culture, on plant performance have stymied research by requiring onerous sample sizes. We compare 5 independently transformed Nicotiana attenuata lines harboring empty vector control (EVC) T-DNA lacking silencing information with isogenic wild types (WT), and measured a battery of ecologically relevant traits, known to be important in plant-herbivore interactions: phytohormones, secondary metabolites, growth and fitness parameters under stringent competitive conditions, and transcriptional regulation with microarrays. As a positive control, we included a line silenced in trypsin proteinase inhibitor gene (TPI) expression, a potent anti-herbivore defense known to exact fitness costs in its expression, in the analysis. The experiment was conducted twice, with 10 and 20 biological replicates per genotype. For all parameters, we detected no difference between any EVC and WT lines, but could readily detect a fitness benefit of silencing TPI production. A statistical power analyses revealed that the minimum sample sizes required for detecting significant fitness differences between EVC and WT was 2–3 orders of magnitude larger than the 10 replicates required to detect a fitness effect of TPI silencing. We conclude that possible side-effects of transformation are far too low to obfuscate the study of ecologically relevant phenotypes. PMID:18253491

  13. Parental Virtue and Prenatal Genetic Alteration Research.

    PubMed

    Tonkens, Ryan

    2015-12-01

    Although the philosophical literature on the ethics of human prenatal genetic alteration (PGA) purports to inform us about how to act, it rarely explicitly recognizes the perspective of those who will be making the PGA decision in practice. Here I approach the ethics of PGA from a distinctly virtue-based perspective, taking seriously what it means to be a good parent making this decision for one's child. From this perspective, I generate a sound verdict on the moral standing of human PGA (research): given the current state of the art, good parents have compelling reason not to consent to PGA (research) for their child, especially as part of the first wave(s) of PGA research participants and especially for non-medically oriented purposes. This is because doing otherwise is inconsistent with a plausible and defensible understanding of virtuous parenting and parental virtues, founded on a genuine concern for promoting the overall flourishing of the eventual child. In essence, given the current and foreseeable state of the art, parents who allow prenatal genetic alteration of their children are less-than-virtuous parents to those children, even in cases where they have a right to do so and even if PGA turns out to be beneficial to the eventual child.

  14. Human genetics in troubled times and places.

    PubMed

    Harper, Peter S

    2018-01-01

    The development of human genetics world-wide during the twentieth century, especially across Europe, has occurred against a background of repeated catastrophes, including two world wars and the ideological problems and repression posed by Nazism and Communism. The published scientific literature gives few hints of these problems and there is a danger that they will be forgotten. The First World War was largely indiscriminate in its carnage, but World War 2 and the preceding years of fascism were associated with widespread migration, especially of Jewish workers expelled from Germany, and of their children, a number of whom would become major contributors to the post-war generation of human and medical geneticists in Britain and America. In Germany itself, eminent geneticists were also involved in the abuses carried out in the name of 'eugenics' and 'race biology'. However, geneticists in America, Britain and the rest of Europe were largely responsible for the ideological foundations of these abuses. In the Soviet Union, geneticists and genetics itself became the object of persecution from the 1930s till as late as the mid 1960s, with an almost complete destruction of the field during this time; this extended also to Eastern Europe and China as part of the influence of Russian communism. Most recently, at the end of the twentieth century, China saw a renewal of government sponsored eugenics programmes, now mostly discarded. During the post-world war 2 decades, human genetics research benefited greatly from recognition of the genetic dangers posed by exposure to radiation, following the atomic bomb explosions in Japan, atmospheric testing and successive accidental nuclear disasters in Russia. Documenting and remembering these traumatic events, now largely forgotten among younger workers, is essential if we are to fully understand the history of human genetics and avoid the repetition of similar disasters in the future. The power of modern human genetic and genomic

  15. Personalized Medicine and Human Genetic Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Yi-Fan; Goldstein, David B.; Angrist, Misha; Cavalleri, Gianpiero

    2014-01-01

    Human genetic diversity has long been studied both to understand how genetic variation influences risk of disease and infer aspects of human evolutionary history. In this article, we review historical and contemporary views of human genetic diversity, the rare and common mutations implicated in human disease susceptibility, and the relevance of genetic diversity to personalized medicine. First, we describe the development of thought about diversity through the 20th century and through more modern studies including genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and next-generation sequencing. We introduce several examples, such as sickle cell anemia and Tay–Sachs disease that are caused by rare mutations and are more frequent in certain geographical populations, and common treatment responses that are caused by common variants, such as hepatitis C infection. We conclude with comments about the continued relevance of human genetic diversity in medical genetics and personalized medicine more generally. PMID:25059740

  16. Summary of research needs for sunflower genetics

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Genetic research of the sunflower research unit, USDA-ARS, in Fargo, ND, was discussed in a presentation to a group of producers, industry representatives, and scientists. The need for sunflower genetic research is ever increasing with more insect and disease problems nationwide. Combined with a ren...

  17. Potential treatments for genetic hearing loss in humans: current conundrums.

    PubMed

    Minoda, R; Miwa, T; Ise, M; Takeda, H

    2015-08-01

    Genetic defects are a major cause of hearing loss in newborns. Consequently, hearing loss has a profound negative impact on human daily living. Numerous causative genes for genetic hearing loss have been identified. However, presently, there are no truly curative treatments for this condition. There have been several recent reports on successful treatments in mice using embryonic gene therapy, neonatal gene therapy and neonatal antisense oligonucleotide therapy. Herein, we describe state-of-the-art research on genetic hearing loss treatment through gene therapy and discuss the obstacles to overcome in curative treatments of genetic hearing loss in humans.

  18. Insights into the genetic foundations of human communication.

    PubMed

    Graham, Sarah A; Deriziotis, Pelagia; Fisher, Simon E

    2015-03-01

    The human capacity to acquire sophisticated language is unmatched in the animal kingdom. Despite the discontinuity in communicative abilities between humans and other primates, language is built on ancient genetic foundations, which are being illuminated by comparative genomics. The genetic architecture of the language faculty is also being uncovered by research into neurodevelopmental disorders that disrupt the normally effortless process of language acquisition. In this article, we discuss the strategies that researchers are using to reveal genetic factors contributing to communicative abilities, and review progress in identifying the relevant genes and genetic variants. The first gene directly implicated in a speech and language disorder was FOXP2. Using this gene as a case study, we illustrate how evidence from genetics, molecular cell biology, animal models and human neuroimaging has converged to build a picture of the role of FOXP2 in neurodevelopment, providing a framework for future endeavors to bridge the gaps between genes, brains and behavior.

  19. Genetically modified pig models for human diseases.

    PubMed

    Fan, Nana; Lai, Liangxue

    2013-02-20

    Genetically modified animal models are important for understanding the pathogenesis of human disease and developing therapeutic strategies. Although genetically modified mice have been widely used to model human diseases, some of these mouse models do not replicate important disease symptoms or pathology. Pigs are more similar to humans than mice in anatomy, physiology, and genome. Thus, pigs are considered to be better animal models to mimic some human diseases. This review describes genetically modified pigs that have been used to model various diseases including neurological, cardiovascular, and diabetic disorders. We also discuss the development in gene modification technology that can facilitate the generation of transgenic pig models for human diseases.

  20. Genetic & epigenetic approach to human obesity.

    PubMed

    Rao, K Rajender; Lal, Nirupama; Giridharan, N V

    2014-11-01

    Obesity is an important clinical and public health challenge, epitomized by excess adipose tissue accumulation resulting from an imbalance in energy intake and energy expenditure. It is a forerunner for a variety of other diseases such as type-2-diabetes (T2D), cardiovascular diseases, some types of cancer, stroke, hyperlipidaemia and can be fatal leading to premature death. Obesity is highly heritable and arises from the interplay of multiple genes and environmental factors. Recent advancements in Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have shown important steps towards identifying genetic risks and identification of genetic markers for lifestyle diseases, especially for a metabolic disorder like obesity. According to the 12th Update of Human Obesity Gene Map there are 253 quantity trait loci (QTL) for obesity related phenotypes from 61 genome wide scan studies. Contribution of genetic propensity of individual ethnic and racial variations in obesity is an active area of research. Further, understanding its complexity as to how these variations could influence ones susceptibility to become or remain obese will lead us to a greater understanding of how obesity occurs and hopefully, how to prevent and treat this condition. In this review, various strategies adapted for such an analysis based on the recent advances in genome wide and functional variations in human obesity are discussed.

  1. Genetic & epigenetic approach to human obesity

    PubMed Central

    Rao, K. Rajender; Lal, Nirupama; Giridharan, N.V.

    2014-01-01

    Obesity is an important clinical and public health challenge, epitomized by excess adipose tissue accumulation resulting from an imbalance in energy intake and energy expenditure. It is a forerunner for a variety of other diseases such as type-2-diabetes (T2D), cardiovascular diseases, some types of cancer, stroke, hyperlipidaemia and can be fatal leading to premature death. Obesity is highly heritable and arises from the interplay of multiple genes and environmental factors. Recent advancements in Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have shown important steps towards identifying genetic risks and identification of genetic markers for lifestyle diseases, especially for a metabolic disorder like obesity. According to the 12th Update of Human Obesity Gene Map there are 253 quantity trait loci (QTL) for obesity related phenotypes from 61 genome wide scan studies. Contribution of genetic propensity of individual ethnic and racial variations in obesity is an active area of research. Further, understanding its complexity as to how these variations could influence ones susceptibility to become or remain obese will lead us to a greater understanding of how obesity occurs and hopefully, how to prevent and treat this condition. In this review, various strategies adapted for such an analysis based on the recent advances in genome wide and functional variations in human obesity are discussed. PMID:25579139

  2. Recollections of J.B.S. Haldane, with special reference to Human Genetics in India

    PubMed Central

    Dronamraju, Krishna R.

    2012-01-01

    This paper is a brief account of the scientific work of J.B.S. Haldane (1892–1964), with special reference to early research in Human Genetics. Brief descriptions of Haldane's background, his important contributions to the foundations of human genetics, his move to India from Great Britain and the research carried out in Human Genetics in India under his direction are outlined. Population genetic research on Y-linkage in man, inbreeding, color blindness and other aspects are described. PMID:22754215

  3. Genetic susceptibility to radiogenic cancer in humans.

    PubMed

    Allan, James M

    2008-11-01

    The clinical benefits associated with the use of ionizing radiation for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes are well established, particularly in cancer medicine. Unfortunately, it is now clear that prior exposure to radiation is associated with an excess risk of developing malignancy in the exposure field. Indeed, the development of a second primary malignancy is a devastating side effect that can often be attributed to radiotherapy for a first cancer. Research has focused on elucidating the relationship between therapeutic radiation dose and site-specific cancer risk, and how this relationship is affected by host factors such as age, sex, and exposure to other potential carcinogens. By contrast, there is a relative paucity of data on host genetic susceptibility to cancer following cytotoxic and mutagenic radiation exposure. Animal model systems suggest a strong genetic basis underlying susceptibility to radiogenic cancer. In humans, research has focused on investigating loci with relatively rare putative high penetrance risk alleles. However, genetic susceptibility to radiogenic cancer and other late effects of radiation exposure may be determined predominantly by co-inheritance of low penetrance risk alleles, and how these interact with each other (gene-gene interactions), with radiation dose (gene-exposure interactions) and other risk factors.

  4. Plasmodium falciparum genetic crosses in a humanized mouse model

    PubMed Central

    Vaughan, Ashley M.; Pinapati, Richard S.; Cheeseman, Ian H.; Camargo, Nelly; Fishbaugher, Matthew; Checkley, Lisa A.; Nair, Shalini; Hutyra, Carolyn A.; Nosten, François H.; Anderson, Timothy J. C.; Ferdig, Michael T.; Kappe, Stefan H. I.

    2015-01-01

    Genetic crosses of phenotypically distinct strains of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum are a powerful tool for identifying genes controlling drug resistance and other key phenotypes. Previous studies relied on the isolation of recombinant parasites from splenectomized chimpanzees, a research avenue that is no longer available. Here, we demonstrate that human-liver chimeric mice support recovery of recombinant progeny for the identification of genetic determinants of parasite traits and adaptations. PMID:26030447

  5. Genetics of human iris colour and patterns.

    PubMed

    Sturm, Richard A; Larsson, Mats

    2009-10-01

    The presence of melanin pigment within the iris is responsible for the visual impression of human eye colouration with complex patterns also evident in this tissue, including Fuchs' crypts, nevi, Wolfflin nodules and contraction furrows. The genetic basis underlying the determination and inheritance of these traits has been the subject of debate and research from the very beginning of quantitative trait studies in humans. Although segregation of blue-brown eye colour has been described using a simple Mendelian dominant-recessive gene model this is too simplistic, and a new molecular genetic perspective is needed to fully understand the biological complexities of this process as a polygenic trait. Nevertheless, it has been estimated that 74% of the variance in human eye colour can be explained by one interval on chromosome 15 that contains the OCA2 gene. Fine mapping of this region has identified a single base change rs12913832 T/C within intron 86 of the upstream HERC2 locus that explains almost all of this association with blue-brown eye colour. A model is presented whereby this SNP, serving as a target site for the SWI/SNF family member HLTF, acts as part of a highly evolutionary conserved regulatory element required for OCA2 gene activation through chromatin remodelling. Major candidate genes possibly effecting iris patterns are also discussed, including MITF and PAX6.

  6. The Sonoda–Tajima Cell Collection: A Human Genetics Research Resource with Emphasis on South American Indigenous Populations

    PubMed Central

    Danjoh, Inaho; Saijo, Kaoru; Hiroyama, Takashi

    2011-01-01

    The Sonoda–Tajima Cell Collection includes cell samples obtained from a range of ethnic minority groups across the world but in particular from South America. The collection is made all the more valuable by the fact that some of these ethnic populations have since died out, and thus it will be impossible to prepare a similar cell collection again. The collection was donated to our institute, a public cell bank in Japan, by Drs Sonoda and Tajima to make it available to researchers throughout the world. The original cell collection was composed of cryopreserved peripheral blood samples that would obviously have been rapidly exhausted if used directly. We, therefore, immortalized some samples with the Epstein–Barr virus and established B-lymphoblastoid cell lines (B-LCLs). As there is continuing controversy over whether the B-LCL genome is stably maintained, we performed an array comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) analysis to confirm the genomic stability of the cell lines. The array CGH analysis of the B-LCL lines and their parental B cells demonstrated that genomic stability was maintained in the long-term cell cultures. The B-LCLs of the Sonoda–Tajima Collection will therefore be made available to interested scientists around the world. At present, 512 B-LCLs have been developed, and we are willing to increase the number if there is sufficient demand. PMID:21383383

  7. Genetic enhancement, human nature, and rights.

    PubMed

    McConnell, Terrance

    2010-08-01

    Authors such as Francis Fukuyama, the President's Council on Bioethics, and George Annas have argued that biotechnological interventions that aim to promote genetic enhancement pose a threat to human nature. This paper clarifies what conclusions these critics seek to establish, and then shows that there is no plausible account of human nature that will meet the conditions necessary to support this position. Appeals to human nature cannot establish a prohibition against the pursuit of genetic enhancement.

  8. Human genetic determinants of dengue virus susceptibility.

    PubMed

    Coffey, Lark L; Mertens, Eva; Brehin, Anne-Claire; Fernandez-Garcia, Maria Dolores; Amara, Ali; Després, Philippe; Sakuntabhai, Anavaj

    2009-02-01

    Dengue virus (DENV) is an emerging mosquito-borne pathogen that produces significant morbidity worldwide resulting in an estimated 50-100 million infections annually. DENV causes a spectrum of illness ranging from inapparent infection to life-threatening hemorrhagic fever and shock. The varied DENV disease outcome is determined by complex interactions between immunopathologic, viral, and human genetic factors. This review summarizes these interactions with a focus on human genetic determinants of DENV susceptibility, including human leukocyte antigens, blood type, and single nucleotide polymorphisms in immune response genes that have been associated with DENV disease. We also discuss other factors related to DENV outcome including viral genetic determinants, age, ethnicity, and nutritional status as they relate to DENV susceptibility. We emphasize the need for functional genetics studies to complement association-based data and we call for controlled study designs and standard clinical DENV disease definitions that will strengthen conclusions based on human genetic DENV studies.

  9. CRISPR: a versatile tool for both forward and reverse genetics research.

    PubMed

    Gurumurthy, Channabasavaiah B; Grati, M'hamed; Ohtsuka, Masato; Schilit, Samantha L P; Quadros, Rolen M; Liu, Xue Zhong

    2016-09-01

    Human genetics research employs the two opposing approaches of forward and reverse genetics. While forward genetics identifies and links a mutation to an observed disease etiology, reverse genetics induces mutations in model organisms to study their role in disease. In most cases, causality for mutations identified by forward genetics is confirmed by reverse genetics through the development of genetically engineered animal models and an assessment of whether the model can recapitulate the disease. While many technological advances have helped improve these approaches, some gaps still remain. CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated), which has emerged as a revolutionary genetic engineering tool, holds great promise for closing such gaps. By combining the benefits of forward and reverse genetics, it has dramatically expedited human genetics research. We provide a perspective on the power of CRISPR-based forward and reverse genetics tools in human genetics and discuss its applications using some disease examples.

  10. CRISPR: a Versatile Tool for Both Forward and Reverse Genetics Research

    PubMed Central

    Gurumurthy, Channabasavaiah B.; Grati, M'hamed; Ohtsuka, Masato; Schilit, Samantha L.P.; Quadros, Rolen M.; Liu, Xue Zhong

    2016-01-01

    Human genetics research employs the two opposing approaches of forward and reverse genetics. While forward genetics identifies and links a mutation to an observed disease etiology, reverse genetics induces mutations in model organisms to study their role in disease. In most cases, causality for mutations identified by forward genetics is confirmed by reverse genetics through the development of genetically engineered animal models and an assessment of whether the model can recapitulate the disease. While many technological advances have helped improve these approaches, some gaps still remain. CRISPR/Cas (clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats/CRISPR-associated) system, which has emerged as a revolutionary genetic engineering tool, holds great promise for closing such gaps. By combining the benefits of forward and reverse genetics, it has dramatically expedited human genetics research. We provide a perspective on the power of CRISPR-based forward and reverse genetics tools in human genetics and discuss its applications using some disease examples. PMID:27384229

  11. Categorization of humans in biomedical research: genes, race and disease

    PubMed Central

    Risch, Neil; Burchard, Esteban; Ziv, Elad; Tang, Hua

    2002-01-01

    A debate has arisen regarding the validity of racial/ethnic categories for biomedical and genetic research. Some claim 'no biological basis for race' while others advocate a 'race-neutral' approach, using genetic clustering rather than self-identified ethnicity for human genetic categorization. We provide an epidemiologic perspective on the issue of human categorization in biomedical and genetic research that strongly supports the continued use of self-identified race and ethnicity. PMID:12184798

  12. Religious aspects of human genetic information.

    PubMed

    Kimura, R

    1990-01-01

    To obtain human genetic information with the intention of treating and curing severe genetic disease would be considered to be a positive personal decision of a moral agent in various religious contexts. According to some religious teachings human suffering should not be regarded merely as a negative element of life; however, the scientific achievement of obtaining genetic information should surely increase the possibility of hope for the eventual cure of genetically determined diseases. The elimination of human suffering and tragedy in severe genetically determined illness, on the criterion of the benefit of the patient, is permitted by various contemporary religious teachings, according to an analysis of publications by the World Council of Churches and the Vatican and sources from Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist teachings.

  13. The genetics of human obesity.

    PubMed

    Xia, Qianghua; Grant, Struan F A

    2013-04-01

    It has long been known that there is a genetic component to obesity, and that characterizing this underlying factor would likely offer the possibility of better intervention in the future. Monogenic obesity has proved to be relatively straightforward, with a combination of linkage analysis and mouse models facilitating the identification of multiple genes. In contrast, genome-wide association studies have successfully revealed a variety of genetic loci associated with the more common form of obesity, allowing for very strong consensus on the underlying genetic architecture of the phenotype for the first time. Although a number of significant findings have been made, it appears that very little of the apparent heritability of body mass index has actually been explained to date. New approaches for data analyses and advances in technology will be required to uncover the elusive missing heritability, and to aid in the identification of the key causative genetic underpinnings of obesity. © 2013 New York Academy of Sciences.

  14. The genetics of human obesity

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Qianghua; Grant, Struan FA

    2013-01-01

    It has long been known that there is a genetic component to obesity, and that characterizing this underlying factor would likely offer the possibility of better intervention in the future. Monogenic obesity has proved to be relatively straightforward, with a combination of linkage analysis and mouse models facilitating the identification of multiple genes. In contrast, genome-wide association studies have successfully revealed a variety of genetic loci associated with the more common form of obesity, allowing for very strong consensus on the underlying genetic architecture of the phenotype for the first time. Although a number of significant findings have been made, it appears that very little of the apparent heritability of body mass index has actually been explained to date. New approaches for data analyses and advances in technology will be required to uncover the elusive missing heritability, and to aid in the identification of the key causative genetic underpinnings of obesity. PMID:23360386

  15. Some pioneers of European human genetics.

    PubMed

    Harper, Peter S

    2017-05-10

    Some of the pioneers of human genetics across Europe are described, based on a series of 100 recorded interviews made by the author. These interviews, and the memories of earlier workers in the field recalled by interviewees, provide a vivid picture, albeit incomplete, of the early years of human and medical genetics. From small beginnings in the immediate post-World War 2 years, human genetics grew rapidly across many European countries, a powerful factor being the development of human cytogenetics, stimulated by concerns over the risks of radiation exposure. Medical applications soon followed, with the recognition of human chromosome abnormalities, the need for genetic counselling, the possibility of prenatal diagnosis and later, the applications of human molecular genetics. The evolution of the field has been strongly influenced by the characters and interests of the relatively small number of founding workers in different European countries, as well as by wider social, medical and scientific factors in the individual countries.European Journal of Human Genetics advance online publication, 10 May 2017; doi:10.1038/ejhg.2017.47.

  16. Community Engagement about Genetic Variation Research

    PubMed Central

    Christensen, Kurt D.; Metosky, Susan; Rudofsky, Gayle; Deignan, Kathleen P.; Martinez, Hulda; Johnson-Moore, Penelope; Citrin, Toby

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The aim of this article is to describe the methods and effectiveness of the Public Engagement in Genetic Variation and Haplotype Mapping Issues (PEGV) Project, which engaged a community in policy discussion about genetic variation research. The project implemented a 6-stage community engagement model in New Rochelle, New York. First, researchers recruited community partners. Second, the project team created community oversight. Third, focus groups discussed concerns generated by genetic variation research. Fourth, community dialogue sessions addressed focus group findings and developed policy recommendations. Fifth, a conference was held to present these policy recommendations and to provide a forum for HapMap (haplotype mapping) researchers to dialogue directly with residents. Finally, findings were disseminated via presentations and papers to the participants and to the wider community beyond. The project generated a list of proposed guidelines for genetic variation research that addressed the concerns of New Rochelle residents. Project team members expressed satisfaction with the engagement model overall but expressed concerns about how well community groups were utilized and what segment of the community actually engaged in the project. The PEGV Project represents a model for researchers to engage the general public in policy development about genetic research. There are benefits of such a process beyond the desired genetic research. (Population Health Management 2012;15:78–89) PMID:21815821

  17. The Role of Recombinant Genetics in Humanism.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacobs, Troy A.

    1983-01-01

    To eliminate the public's fear of recombinant genetics the important link between science and the humanities should be part of the educational system. Universal applied genetics guidelines are needed that encompass philosophical and technical issues. Biological advances can revitalize humankind in the future. (AM)

  18. Tomicus and anoplophora genetics: Important research needs

    Treesearch

    Robert A. Haack; Therese M. Poland; Jian Wu; Hui Ye

    1999-01-01

    This proceeding contains contributions from each author or group of authors who presented their current research at the bark beetle genetics workshop held 17-18 July 1998 on the campus of the University of Wisconsin in Madison, wisconsin, USA. This was the second meeting on this subject; the first was held in 1992. The subject of bark beete genetics is of growing,...

  19. The genetics of human obesity.

    PubMed

    Waalen, Jill

    2014-10-01

    The heritability of obesity has long been appreciated and the genetics of obesity has been the focus of intensive study for decades. Early studies elucidating genetic factors involved in rare monogenic and syndromic forms of extreme obesity focused attention on dysfunction of hypothalamic leptin-related pathways in the control of food intake as a major contributor. Subsequent genome-wide association studies of common genetic variants identified novel loci that are involved in more common forms of obesity across populations of diverse ethnicities and ages. The subsequent search for factors contributing to the heritability of obesity not explained by these 2 approaches ("missing heritability") has revealed additional rare variants, copy number variants, and epigenetic changes that contribute. Although clinical applications of these findings have been limited to date, the increasing understanding of the interplay of these genetic factors with environmental conditions, such as the increased availability of high calorie foods and decreased energy expenditure of sedentary lifestyles, promises to accelerate the translation of genetic findings into more successful preventive and therapeutic interventions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Glenn Research Center Human Research Program: Overview

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nall, Marsha M.; Myers, Jerry G.

    2013-01-01

    The NASA-Glenn Research Centers Human Research Program office supports a wide range of technology development efforts aimed at enabling extended human presence in space. This presentation provides a brief overview of the historical successes, current 2013 activities and future projects of NASA-GRCs Human Research Program.

  1. The genetics of neuroticism and human values.

    PubMed

    Zacharopoulos, George; Lancaster, Thomas M; Maio, Gregory R; Linden, David E J

    2016-04-01

    Human values and personality have been shown to share genetic variance in twin studies. However, there is a lack of evidence about the genetic components of this association. This study examined the interplay between genes, values and personality in the case of neuroticism, because polygenic scores were available for this personality trait. First, we replicated prior evidence of a positive association between the polygenic neuroticism score (PNS) and neuroticism. Second, we found that the PNS was significantly associated with the whole human value space in a sinusoidal waveform that was consistent with Schwartz's circular model of human values. These results suggest that it is useful to consider human values in the analyses of genetic contributions to personality traits. They also pave the way for an investigation of the biological mechanisms contributing to human value orientations.

  2. The genetics of neuroticism and human values

    PubMed Central

    Lancaster, Thomas M.; Maio, Gregory R.; Linden, David E. J.

    2016-01-01

    Human values and personality have been shown to share genetic variance in twin studies. However, there is a lack of evidence about the genetic components of this association. This study examined the interplay between genes, values and personality in the case of neuroticism, because polygenic scores were available for this personality trait. First, we replicated prior evidence of a positive association between the polygenic neuroticism score (PNS) and neuroticism. Second, we found that the PNS was significantly associated with the whole human value space in a sinusoidal waveform that was consistent with Schwartz's circular model of human values. These results suggest that it is useful to consider human values in the analyses of genetic contributions to personality traits. They also pave the way for an investigation of the biological mechanisms contributing to human value orientations. PMID:26915771

  3. Human genetic factors in tuberculosis: an update.

    PubMed

    van Tong, Hoang; Velavan, Thirumalaisamy P; Thye, Thorsten; Meyer, Christian G

    2017-09-01

    Tuberculosis (TB) is a major threat to human health, especially in many developing countries. Human genetic variability has been recognised to be of great relevance in host responses to Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection and in regulating both the establishment and the progression of the disease. An increasing number of candidate gene and genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have focused on human genetic factors contributing to susceptibility or resistance to TB. To update previous reviews on human genetic factors in TB we searched the MEDLINE database and PubMed for articles from 1 January 2014 through 31 March 2017 and reviewed the role of human genetic variability in TB. Search terms applied in various combinations were 'tuberculosis', 'human genetics', 'candidate gene studies', 'genome-wide association studies' and 'Mycobacterium tuberculosis'. Articles in English retrieved and relevant references cited in these articles were reviewed. Abstracts and reports from meetings were also included. This review provides a recent summary of associations of polymorphisms of human genes with susceptibility/resistance to TB. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. Behavioral genetics '97: ASHG statement. Recent developments in human behavioral genetics: past accomplishments and future directions.

    PubMed Central

    Sherman, S L; DeFries, J C; Gottesman, I I; Loehlin, J C; Meyer, J M; Pelias, M Z; Rice, J; Waldman, I

    1997-01-01

    The field of behavioral genetics has enormous potential to uncover both genetic and environmental influences on normal and deviant behavior. Behavioral-genetic methods are based on a solid foundation of theories and methods that successfully have delineated components of complex traits in plants and animals. New resources are now available to dissect the genetic component of these complex traits. As specific genes are identified, we can begin to explore how these interact with environmental factors in development. How we interpret such findings, how we ask new questions, how we celebrate the knowledge, and how we use or misuse this knowledge are all important considerations. These issues are pervasive in all areas of human research, and they are especially salient in human behavioral genetics. PMID:9199545

  5. Genetically Engineered Pig Models for Human Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Prather, Randall S.; Lorson, Monique; Ross, Jason W.; Whyte, Jeffrey J.; Walters, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Although pigs are used widely as models of human disease, their utility as models has been enhanced by genetic engineering. Initially, transgenes were added randomly to the genome, but with the application of homologous recombination, zinc finger nucleases, and transcription activator-like effector nuclease (TALEN) technologies, now most any genetic change that can be envisioned can be completed. To date these genetic modifications have resulted in animals that have the potential to provide new insights into human diseases for which a good animal model did not exist previously. These new animal models should provide the preclinical data for treatments that are developed for diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, cystic fibrosis, retinitis pigmentosa, spinal muscular atrophy, diabetes, and organ failure. These new models will help to uncover aspects and treatments of these diseases that were otherwise unattainable. The focus of this review is to describe genetically engineered pigs that have resulted in models of human diseases. PMID:25387017

  6. Genetic Diversity and Human Equality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dobzhansky, Theodosius

    The idea of equality often, if not frequently, bogs down in confusion and apparent contradictions; equality is confused with identity, and diversity with inequality. It would seem that the easiest way to discredit the idea of equality is to show that people are innately, genetically, and, therefore, irremediably diverse and unlike. The snare is,…

  7. Genetic Diversity and Human Equality.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dobzhansky, Theodosius

    The idea of equality often, if not frequently, bogs down in confusion and apparent contradictions; equality is confused with identity, and diversity with inequality. It would seem that the easiest way to discredit the idea of equality is to show that people are innately, genetically, and, therefore, irremediably diverse and unlike. The snare is,…

  8. Genetically Engineered Humanized Mouse Models for Preclinical Antibody Studies

    PubMed Central

    Proetzel, Gabriele; Wiles, Michael V.; Roopenian, Derry C.

    2015-01-01

    The use of genetic engineering has vastly improved our capabilities to create animal models relevant in preclinical research. With the recent advances in gene-editing technologies, it is now possible to very rapidly create highly tunable mouse models as needs arise. Here, we provide an overview of genetic engineering methods, as well as the development of humanized neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn) models and their use for monoclonal antibody in vivo studies. PMID:24150980

  9. [Progress in Association between Genetic Correlation and Human Violent Behavior].

    PubMed

    Li, Hui; Li, Lei; Xu, Hong-mei; Zhao, Zi-qin; Liu, Wen-bin; Zhou, Huai-gu

    2015-10-01

    Human violent behavior is a complex behavior which is influenced by genetic and environmental factors. There is a trend in investigating the mechanism of violent behavior by using the genetic methods. This article reviews several candidate genes and advances in epigenetics which are associated with violent behavior. The prospects and significance of violent behavior research from the view of gene polymorphism and epigenetics are also discussed.

  10. Understanding of research, genetics and genetic research in a rapid ethical assessment in north west Cameroon

    PubMed Central

    Kengne-Ouafo, Jonas A.; Millard, James D.; Nji, Theobald M.; Tantoh, William F.; Nyoh, Doris N.; Tendongfor, Nicholas; Enyong, Peter A.; Newport, Melanie J.; Davey, Gail; Wanji, Samuel

    2016-01-01

    Background There is limited assessment of whether research participants in low-income settings are afforded a full understanding of the meaning of medical research. There may also be particular issues with the understanding of genetic research. We used a rapid ethical assessment methodology to explore perceptions surrounding the meaning of research, genetics and genetic research in north west Cameroon. Methods Eleven focus group discussions (including 107 adults) and 72 in-depth interviews were conducted with various stakeholders in two health districts in north west Cameroon between February and April 2012. Results Most participants appreciated the role of research in generating knowledge and identified a difference between research and healthcare but gave varied explanations as to this difference. Most participants' understanding of genetics was limited to concepts of hereditary, with potential benefits limited to the level of the individual or family. Explanations based on supernatural beliefs were identified as a special issue but participants tended not to identify any other special risks with genetic research. Conclusion We demonstrated a variable level of understanding of research, genetics and genetic research, with implications for those carrying out genetic research in this and other low resource settings. Our study highlights the utility of rapid ethical assessment prior to complex or sensitive research. PMID:25969503

  11. Understanding of research, genetics and genetic research in a rapid ethical assessment in north west Cameroon.

    PubMed

    Kengne-Ouafo, Jonas A; Millard, James D; Nji, Theobald M; Tantoh, William F; Nyoh, Doris N; Tendongfor, Nicholas; Enyong, Peter A; Newport, Melanie J; Davey, Gail; Wanji, Samuel

    2016-05-01

    There is limited assessment of whether research participants in low-income settings are afforded a full understanding of the meaning of medical research. There may also be particular issues with the understanding of genetic research. We used a rapid ethical assessment methodology to explore perceptions surrounding the meaning of research, genetics and genetic research in north west Cameroon. Eleven focus group discussions (including 107 adults) and 72 in-depth interviews were conducted with various stakeholders in two health districts in north west Cameroon between February and April 2012. Most participants appreciated the role of research in generating knowledge and identified a difference between research and healthcare but gave varied explanations as to this difference. Most participants' understanding of genetics was limited to concepts of hereditary, with potential benefits limited to the level of the individual or family. Explanations based on supernatural beliefs were identified as a special issue but participants tended not to identify any other special risks with genetic research. We demonstrated a variable level of understanding of research, genetics and genetic research, with implications for those carrying out genetic research in this and other low resource settings. Our study highlights the utility of rapid ethical assessment prior to complex or sensitive research. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

  12. Overview of Behavioral Genetics Research for Family Researchers

    PubMed Central

    Samek, Diana; Rueter, Martha; Koh, Bibiana

    2013-01-01

    This article provides an overview of the methods, assumptions, and key findings of behavioral genetics methodology for family researchers with a limited background. We discuss how family researchers can utilize and contribute to the behavioral genetics field, particularly in terms of conducting research that seeks to explain shared environmental effects. This can be done, in part, by theoretically controlling for genetic confounds in research that seeks to determine cause-and-effect relationships among family variables and individual outcomes. Gene–environment correlation and interaction are especially promising areas for the family researcher to address. Given the methodological advancements in the field, we also briefly comment on new methods in molecular genetics for studying psychological mental health disorders. PMID:24073018

  13. Mendelism in human genetics: 100 years on.

    PubMed

    Majumdar, Sisir K

    2003-01-01

    Genetics (Greek word--'genes' = born) is a science without an objective past. But the genre of genetics was always roaming in the corridors of human psyche since antiquity. The account of heritable deformities in human often appears in myths and legends. Ancient Hindu Caste system was based on the assumption that both desirable and undesirable traits are passed from generation to generation. In Babylonia 60 birth defects were listed on Clay tablets written around 5,000 year ago. The Jewish Talmud contains accurate description of the inheritance of haemophilia--a human genetic disorder. The Upanisads vedant--800--200 BC provides instructions for the choice of a wife emphasizing that no heritable illness should be present and that the family should show evidence of good character for several preceding generations. These examples indicate that heritable human traits played a significant role in social customs are presented in this article.

  14. Genetic diversity revealed in human faces.

    PubMed

    Lie, Hanne C; Rhodes, Gillian; Simmons, Leigh W

    2008-10-01

    From an evolutionary perspective, human facial attractiveness is proposed to signal mate quality. Using a novel approach to the study of the genetic basis of human preferences for facial features, we investigated whether attractiveness signals mate quality in terms of genetic diversity. Genetic diversity in general has been linked to fitness and reproductive success, and genetic diversity within the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) has been linked to immunocompetence and mate preferences. We asked whether any preference for genetic diversity is specific to MHC diversity or reflects a more general preference for overall genetic diversity. We photographed and genotyped 160 participants using microsatellite markers situated within and outside the MHC, and calculated two measures of genetic diversity: mean heterozygosity and standardized mean d(2). Our results suggest a special role for the MHC in female preferences for male faces. MHC heterozygosity positively predicted male attractiveness, and specifically facial averageness, with averageness mediating the MHC-attractiveness relationship. For females, standardized mean d(2) at non-MHC loci predicted facial symmetry. Thus, attractive facial characteristics appear to provide visual cues to genetic quality in both males and females, supporting the view that face preferences have been shaped by selection pressures to identify high-quality mates.

  15. Genetics of human aggressive behaviour.

    PubMed

    Craig, Ian W; Halton, Kelly E

    2009-07-01

    A consideration of the evolutionary, physiological and anthropological aspects of aggression suggests that individual differences in such behaviour will have important genetic as well as environmental underpinning. Surveys of the likely pathways controlling the physiological and neuronal processes involved highlight, as obvious targets to investigate, genes implicated in sexual differentiation, anxiety, stress response and the serotonin neurotransmitter pathway. To date, however, association studies on single candidates have provided little evidence for any such loci with a major effect size. This may be because genes do not operate independently, but function against a background in which other genetic and environmental factors are crucial. Indeed, a series of recent studies, particularly concentrating on the serotonin and norepinephrine metabolising enzyme, monoamine oxidase A, has emphasised the necessity of examining gene by environmental interactions if the contributions of individual loci are to be understood. These findings will have major significance for the interpretation and analysis of data from detailed whole genome association studies. Functional imaging studies of genetic variants affecting serotonin pathways have also provided valuable insights into potential links between genes, brain and aggressive behaviour.

  16. Sports genetics moving forward: lessons learned from medical research.

    PubMed

    Mattsson, C Mikael; Wheeler, Matthew T; Waggott, Daryl; Caleshu, Colleen; Ashley, Euan A

    2016-03-01

    Sports genetics can take advantage of lessons learned from human disease genetics. By righting past mistakes and increasing scientific rigor, we can magnify the breadth and depth of knowledge in the field. We present an outline of challenges facing sports genetics in the light of experiences from medical research. Sports performance is complex, resulting from a combination of a wide variety of different traits and attributes. Improving sports genetics will foremost require analyses based on detailed phenotyping. To find widely valid, reproducible common variants associated with athletic phenotypes, study sample sizes must be dramatically increased. One paradox is that in order to confirm relevance, replications in specific populations must be undertaken. Family studies of athletes may facilitate the discovery of rare variants with large effects on athletic phenotypes. The complexity of the human genome, combined with the complexity of athletic phenotypes, will require additional metadata and biological validation to identify a comprehensive set of genes involved. Analysis of personal genetic and multiomic profiles contribute to our conceptualization of precision medicine; the same will be the case in precision sports science. In the refinement of sports genetics it is essential to evaluate similarities and differences between sexes and among ethnicities. Sports genetics to date have been hampered by small sample sizes and biased methodology, which can lead to erroneous associations and overestimation of effect sizes. Consequently, currently available genetic tests based on these inherently limited data cannot predict athletic performance with any accuracy. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  17. Genetics of obesity in humans.

    PubMed

    Farooqi, Sadaf; O'Rahilly, Stephen

    2006-12-01

    Considerable attention has focused on deciphering the hypothalamic pathways that mediate the behavioral and metabolic effects of leptin. We and others have identified several single gene defects that disrupt the molecules in the leptin-melanocortin pathway causing severe obesity in humans. In this review, we consider these human monogenic obesity syndromes and discuss how far the characterization of these patients has informed our understanding of the physiological role of leptin and the melanocortins in the regulation of human body weight and neuroendocrine function.

  18. Human genetics of diabetic vascular complications.

    PubMed

    Tang, Zi-Hui; Fang, Zhou; Zhou, Linuo

    2013-12-01

    Diabetic vascular complications (DVC) affecting several important organ systems of human body such as the cardiovascular system constitute a major public health problem. There is evidence demonstrating that genetic factors contribute to the risk of DVC genetic variants, structural variants, and epigenetic changes play important roles in the development of DVC. Genetic linkage studies have uncovered a number of genetic loci that may shape the risk of DVC. Genetic association studies have identified many common genetic variants for susceptibility to DVC. Structural variants such as copy number variation and interactions of gene x environment have also been detected by association analysis. Apart from the nuclear genome, mitochondrial DNA plays a critical role in regulation of development of DVC. Epigenetic studies have indicated epigenetic changes in chromatin affecting gene transcription in response to environmental stimuli, which provided a large body of evidence of regulating development of diabetes mellitus. Recently, a new window has opened on identifying rare and common genetic loci through next generation sequencing technologies. This review focusses on the current knowledge of the genetic and epigenetic basis of DVC. Ultimately, identification of genes or genetic loci, structural variants and epigenetic changes contributing to risk of or protection from DVC will help uncover the complex mechanism(s) underlying DVC, with crucial implications for the development of personalized medicine for diabetes mellitus and its complications.

  19. Consent for Genetic Research in the Framingham Heart Study

    PubMed Central

    Levy, Daniel; Splansky, Greta Lee; Strand, Nicolle K.; Atwood, Larry D.; Benjamin, Emelia J.; Blease, Susan; Cupples, L. Adrienne; D’Agostino, Ralph B.; Fox, Caroline S.; Kelly-Hayes, Margaret; Koski, Greg; Larson, Martin G.; Mutalik, Karen M.; Oberacker, Elizabeth; O’Donnell, Christopher J.; Sutherland, Patrice; Valentino, Maureen; Vasan, Ramachandran S.; Wolf, Philip A.; Murabito, Joanne M.

    2010-01-01

    Extensive efforts have been aimed at understanding the genetic underpinnings of complex diseases that affect humans. Numerous genome-wide association studies have assessed the association of genes with human disease; including the Framingham Heart Study (FHS), which genotyped 550,000 SNPs in 9,000 participants. The success of such efforts requires high rates of consent by participants, which is dependent on ethical oversight, communications, and trust between research participants and investigators. To study this we calculated percentages of participants who consented to collection of DNA and to various uses of their genetic information in two FHS cohorts between 2002 and 2009. The data included rates of consent for providing a DNA sample, creating an immortalized cell line, conducting research on various genetic conditions including those that might be considered sensitive, and for notifying participants of clinically significant genetic findings were above 95%. Only with regard to granting permission to share DNA or genetic findings with for-profit companies was the consent rate below 95%. We concluded that the FHS has maintained high rates of retention and consent for genetic research that has provided the scientific freedom to establish collaborations and address a broad range of research questions. We speculate that our high rates of consent have been achieved by establishing frequent and open communications with participants that highlight extensive oversight procedures. Our approach to maintaining high consent rates via ethical oversight of genetic research and communication with study participants is summarized in this report and should be of help to other studies engaged in similar types of research. PMID:20425830

  20. The return of individual research findings in paediatric genetic research.

    PubMed

    Hens, Kristien; Nys, Herman; Cassiman, Jean-Jacques; Dierickx, Kris

    2011-03-01

    The combination of the issue of return of individual genetic results/incidental findings and paediatric biobanks is not much discussed in ethical literature. The traditional arguments pro and con return of such findings focus on principles such as respect for persons, autonomy and solidarity. Two dimensions have been distilled from the discussion on return of individual results in a genetic research context: the respect for a participant's autonomy and the duty of the researcher. Concepts such as autonomy and solidarity do not fit easily in the discussion when paediatric biobanks are concerned. Although parents may be allowed to enrol children in minimal risk genetic research on stored tissue samples, they should not be given the option to opt out of receiving important health information. Also, children have a right to an open future: parents do not have the right to access any genetic data that a biobank holds on their children. In this respect, the guidelines on genetic testing of minors are applicable. With regard to the duty of the researcher the question of whether researchers have a more stringent duty to return important health information when their research subjects are children is more difficult to answer. A researcher's primary duty is to perform useful research, a policy to return individual results must not hamper this task. The fact that vulnerable children are concerned, is an additional factor that should be considered when a policy of returning results is laid down for a specific collection or research project.

  1. Genetically modified animals and pharmacological research.

    PubMed

    Wells, Dominic J

    2010-01-01

    This chapter reviews the use of genetically modified animals and the increasingly detailed knowledge of the genomes of the domestic species. The different approaches to genetic modification are outlined as are the advantages and disadvantages of the techniques in different species. Genetically modified mice have been fundamental in understanding gene function and in generating affordable models of human disease although these are not without their drawbacks. Transgenic farm animals have been developed for nutritionally enhanced food, disease resistance and xenografting. Transgenic rabbits, goats, sheep and cows have been developed as living bioreactors producing potentially high value biopharmaceuticals, commonly referred to as "pharming". Domestic animals are also important as a target as well as for testing genetic-based therapies for both inherited and acquired disease. This latter field may be the most important of all, in the future development of novel therapies.

  2. A genetic atlas of human admixture history

    PubMed Central

    Hellenthal, Garrett; Busby, George B.J.; Band, Gavin; Wilson, James F.; Capelli, Cristian

    2014-01-01

    Modern genetic data combined with appropriate statistical methods have the potential to contribute substantially to our understanding of human history. We have developed an approach that exploits the genomic structure of admixed populations to date and characterize historical mixture events at fine scales. We used this to produce an atlas of worldwide human admixture history, constructed using genetic data alone and encompassing over 100 events occurring over the past 4,000 years. We identify events whose dates and participants suggest they describe genetic impacts of the Mongol Empire, Arab slave trade, Bantu expansion, first millennium CE migrations in eastern Europe, and European colonialism, as well as unrecorded events, revealing admixture to be an almost universal force shaping human populations. PMID:24531965

  3. [Advances in genetic research of cerebral palsy].

    PubMed

    Wang, Fang-Fang; Luo, Rong; Qu, Yi; Mu, De-Zhi

    2017-09-01

    Cerebral palsy is a group of syndromes caused by non-progressive brain injury in the fetus or infant and can cause disabilities in childhood. Etiology of cerebral palsy has always been a hot topic for clinical scientists. More and more studies have shown that genetic factors are closely associated with the development of cerebral palsy. With the development and application of various molecular and biological techniques such as chromosome microarray analysis, genome-wide association study, and whole exome sequencing, new achievements have been made in the genetic research of cerebral palsy. Chromosome abnormalities, copy number variations, susceptibility genes, and single gene mutation associated with the development of cerebral palsy have been identified, which provides new opportunities for the research on the pathogenesis of cerebral palsy. This article reviews the advances in the genetic research on cerebral palsy in recent years.

  4. Genetics of human male infertility.

    PubMed

    Poongothai, J; Gopenath, T S; Manonayaki, S

    2009-04-01

    Infertility is defined as a failure to conceive in a couple trying to reproduce for a period of two years without conception. Approximately 15 percent of couples are infertile, and among these couples, male factor infertility accounts for approximately 50 percent of causes. Male infertility is a multifactorial syndrome encompassing a wide variety of disorders. In more than half of infertile men, the cause of their infertility is unknown (idiopathic) and could be congenital or acquired. Infertility in men can be diagnosed initially by semen analysis. Seminograms of infertile men may reveal many abnormal conditions, which include azoospermia, oligozoospermia, teratozoospermia, asthenozoospermia, necrospermia and pyospermia. The current estimate is that about 30 percent of men seeking help at the infertility clinic are found to have oligozoospermia or azoospermia of unknown aetiology. Therefore, there is a need to find the cause of infertility. The causes are known in less than half of these cases, out of which genetic or inherited disease and specific abnormalities in the Y chromosome are major factors. About 10-20 percent of males presenting without sperm in the ejaculate carry a deletion of the Y chromosome. This deleted region includes the Azoospermia Factor (AZF) locus, located in the Yq11, which is divided into four recurrently deleted non-overlapping subregions designated as AZFa, AZFb, AZFc and AZFd. Each of these regions may be associated with a particular testicular histology, and several candidate genes have been found within these regions. The Deleted in Azoospermia (DAZ) gene family is reported to be the most frequently deleted AZF candidate gene and is located in the AZFc region. Recently, a partial, novel Y chromosome 1.6-Mb deletion, designated "gr/gr" deletion, has been described specifically in infertile men with varying degrees of spermatogenic failure. The DAZ gene has an autosomal homologue, DAZL (DAZ-Like), on the short arm of the chromosome 3 (3

  5. Ethical issues in human genome research.

    PubMed

    Murray, T H

    1991-01-01

    In addition to provocative questions about science policy, research on the human genome will generate important ethical questions in at least three categories. First, the possibility of greatly increased genetic information about individuals and populations will require choices to be made about what that information should be and about who should control the generation and dissemination of genetic information. Presymptomatic testing, carrier screening, workplace genetic screening, and testing by insurance companies pose significant ethical problems. Second, the burgeoning ability to manipulate human genotypes and phenotypes raises a number of important ethical questions. Third, increasing knowledge about genetic contributions to ethically and politically significant traits and behaviors will challenge our self-understanding and social institutions.

  6. Large animal models of rare genetic disorders: sheep as phenotypically relevant models of human genetic disease.

    PubMed

    Pinnapureddy, Ashish R; Stayner, Cherie; McEwan, John; Baddeley, Olivia; Forman, John; Eccles, Michael R

    2015-09-02

    Animals that accurately model human disease are invaluable in medical research, allowing a critical understanding of disease mechanisms, and the opportunity to evaluate the effect of therapeutic compounds in pre-clinical studies. Many types of animal models are used world-wide, with the most common being small laboratory animals, such as mice. However, rodents often do not faithfully replicate human disease, despite their predominant use in research. This discordancy is due in part to physiological differences, such as body size and longevity. In contrast, large animal models, including sheep, provide an alternative to mice for biomedical research due to their greater physiological parallels with humans. Completion of the full genome sequences of many species, and the advent of Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technologies, means it is now feasible to screen large populations of domesticated animals for genetic variants that resemble human genetic diseases, and generate models that more accurately model rare human pathologies. In this review, we discuss the notion of using sheep as large animal models, and their advantages in modelling human genetic disease. We exemplify several existing naturally occurring ovine variants in genes that are orthologous to human disease genes, such as the Cln6 sheep model for Batten disease. These, and other sheep models, have contributed significantly to our understanding of the relevant human disease process, in addition to providing opportunities to trial new therapies in animals with similar body and organ size to humans. Therefore sheep are a significant species with respect to the modelling of rare genetic human disease, which we summarize in this review.

  7. [Mycotoxin research in humans].

    PubMed

    Lazo, Ramón F; Sierra, Gonzalo

    2008-03-01

    This study investigates the occurrence of aflatoxins in Ecuador. Early investigators proved the presence of aflatoxins in human and animal food, but the disturbing data lead to the formation of two research teams at Guayaquil University and the Agrarian University of Ecuador to investigate aflaxotins and other mycotoxins in food and their relationship to human health. Because the concept of mycotoxicosis as a result of the secondary metabolites produced by different species of moulds could cause different clinical patterns, the research team includes Aspergillus metabolites found in the urine of a patient with pulmonary aspergilloma. We considered that the body itself could create secondary metabolites. An ELISA method was used to detect mycotoxins with the specific reactive compounds using a company base assay. This allows the detection quantitative of such metabolites in 24 h collected urine. The patient was treated with itraconazole for nine months, after clinical, radiological and aflatoxins testing. We also investigated three other cases in children with a second level of malnutrition and only with vomitoxins results and in three investigated cases of otomycosis caused by Aspergillus niger only in one case traces of aflatoxins were found.

  8. Human Research Program (HRP) Overview

    NASA Image and Video Library

    The Human Research Program (HRP) is a major part of the Space Life and Physical Sciences Research and Applications Division within the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD). ...

  9. Validating therapeutic targets through human genetics.

    PubMed

    Plenge, Robert M; Scolnick, Edward M; Altshuler, David

    2013-08-01

    More than 90% of the compounds that enter clinical trials fail to demonstrate sufficient safety and efficacy to gain regulatory approval. Most of this failure is due to the limited predictive value of preclinical models of disease, and our continued ignorance regarding the consequences of perturbing specific targets over long periods of time in humans. 'Experiments of nature' - naturally occurring mutations in humans that affect the activity of a particular protein target or targets - can be used to estimate the probable efficacy and toxicity of a drug targeting such proteins, as well as to establish causal rather than reactive relationships between targets and outcomes. Here, we describe the concept of dose-response curves derived from experiments of nature, with an emphasis on human genetics as a valuable tool to prioritize molecular targets in drug development. We discuss empirical examples of drug-gene pairs that support the role of human genetics in testing therapeutic hypotheses at the stage of target validation, provide objective criteria to prioritize genetic findings for future drug discovery efforts and highlight the limitations of a target validation approach that is anchored in human genetics.

  10. Population genetics of malaria resistance in humans

    PubMed Central

    Hedrick, P W

    2011-01-01

    The high mortality and widespread impact of malaria have resulted in this disease being the strongest evolutionary selective force in recent human history, and genes that confer resistance to malaria provide some of the best-known case studies of strong positive selection in modern humans. I begin by reviewing JBS Haldane's initial contribution to the potential of malaria genetic resistance in humans. Further, I discuss the population genetics aspects of many of the variants, including globin, G6PD deficiency, Duffy, ovalocytosis, ABO and human leukocyte antigen variants. Many of the variants conferring resistance to malaria are ‘loss-of-function' mutants and appear to be recent polymorphisms from the last 5000–10 000 years or less. I discuss estimation of selection coefficients from case–control data and make predictions about the change for S, C and G6PD-deficiency variants. In addition, I consider the predicted joint changes when the two β-globin alleles S and C are both variable in the same population and when there is a variation for α-thalassemia and S, two unlinked, but epistatic variants. As more becomes known about genes conferring genetic resistance to malaria in humans, population genetics approaches can contribute both to investigating past selection and predicting the consequences in future generations for these variants. PMID:21427751

  11. Office for Human Research Protections

    MedlinePlus

    ... A A A Print Share Office for Human Research Protections The Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP) provides leadership in the protection of ... welfare, and wellbeing of human subjects involved in research conducted or supported by the U.S. Department of ...

  12. Helicopter human factors research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nagel, David C.; Hart, Sandra G.

    1988-01-01

    Helicopter flight is among the most demanding of all human-machine integrations. The inherent manual control complexities of rotorcraft are made even more challenging by the small margin for error created in certain operations, such as nap-of-the-Earth (NOE) flight, by the proximity of the terrain. Accident data recount numerous examples of unintended conflict between helicopters and terrain and attest to the perceptual and control difficulties associated with low altitude flight tasks. Ames Research Center, in cooperation with the U.S. Army Aeroflightdynamics Directorate, has initiated an ambitious research program aimed at increasing safety margins for both civilian and military rotorcraft operations. The program is broad, fundamental, and focused on the development of scientific understandings and technological countermeasures. Research being conducted in several areas is reviewed: workload assessment, prediction, and measure validation; development of advanced displays and effective pilot/automation interfaces; identification of visual cues necessary for low-level, low-visibility flight and modeling of visual flight-path control; and pilot training.

  13. Genetic approaches to understanding human obesity

    PubMed Central

    Ramachandrappa, Shwetha; Farooqi, I. Sadaf

    2011-01-01

    Obesity and its associated comorbidities represent one of the biggest public health challenges facing the world today. The heritability of body weight is high, and genetic variation plays a major role in determining the interindividual differences in susceptibility or resistance to the obesogenic environment. Here we discuss how genetic studies in humans have contributed to our understanding of the central pathways that govern energy homeostasis. We discuss how the arrival of technological advances such as next-generation sequencing will result in a major acceleration in the pace of gene discovery. The study of patients harboring these genetic variants has informed our understanding of the molecular and physiological pathways involved in energy homeostasis. We anticipate that future studies will provide the framework for the development of a more rational targeted approach to the prevention and treatment of genetically susceptible individuals. PMID:21633175

  14. The Genetics of Human Skin Disease

    PubMed Central

    DeStefano, Gina M.; Christiano, Angela M.

    2014-01-01

    The skin is composed of a variety of cell types expressing specific molecules and possessing different properties that facilitate the complex interactions and intercellular communication essential for maintaining the structural integrity of the skin. Importantly, a single mutation in one of these molecules can disrupt the entire organization and function of these essential networks, leading to cell separation, blistering, and other striking phenotypes observed in inherited skin diseases. Over the past several decades, the genetic basis of many monogenic skin diseases has been elucidated using classical genetic techniques. Importantly, the findings from these studies has shed light onto the many classes of molecules and essential genetic as well as molecular interactions that lend the skin its rigid, yet flexible properties. With the advent of the human genome project, next-generation sequencing techniques, as well as several other recently developed methods, tremendous progress has been made in dissecting the genetic architecture of complex, non-Mendelian skin diseases. PMID:25274756

  15. Molecular genetics of human chromosome 21.

    PubMed Central

    Watkins, P C; Tanzi, R E; Cheng, S V; Gusella, J F

    1987-01-01

    Chromosome 21 is the smallest autosome, comprising only about 1.9% of human DNA, but represents one of the most intensively studied regions of the genome. Much of the interest in chromosome 21 can be attributed to its association with Down's syndrome, a genetic disorder that afflicts one in every 700 to 1000 newborns. Although only 17 genes have been assigned to chromosome 21, a very large number of cloned DNA segments of unknown function have been isolated and regionally mapped. The majority of these segments detect restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLPs) and therefore represent useful genetic markers. Continued molecular genetic investigation of chromosome 21 will be central to elucidating molecular events leading to meiotic non-disjunction and consequent trisomy, the contribution of specific genes to the pathology of Down's syndrome, and the possible role of chromosome 21 in Alzheimer's disease and other as yet unmapped genetic defects. PMID:2884319

  16. Genetic research: who is at risk for alcoholism.

    PubMed

    Foroud, Tatiana; Edenberg, Howard J; Crabbe, John C

    2010-01-01

    The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) was founded 40 years ago to help elucidate the biological underpinnings of alcohol dependence, including the potential contribution of genetic factors. Twin, adoption, and family studies conclusively demonstrated that genetic factors account for 50 to 60 percent of the variance in risk for developing alcoholism. Case-control studies and linkage analyses have helped identify DNA variants that contribute to increased risk, and the NIAAA-sponsored Collaborative Studies on Genetics of Alcoholism (COGA) has the expressed goal of identifying contributing genes using state-of-the-art genetic technologies. These efforts have ascertained several genes that may contribute to an increased risk of alcoholism, including certain variants encoding alcohol-metabolizing enzymes and neurotransmitter receptors. Genome-wide association studies allowing the analysis of millions of genetic markers located throughout the genome will enable discovery of further candidate genes. In addition to these human studies, genetic animal models of alcohol's effects and alcohol use have greatly advanced our understanding of the genetic basis of alcoholism, resulting in the identification of quantitative trait loci and allowing for targeted manipulation of candidate genes. Novel research approaches-for example, into epigenetic mechanisms of gene regulation-also are under way and undoubtedly will further clarify the genetic basis of alcoholism.

  17. Discovery Genetics - The History and Future of Spontaneous Mutation Research.

    PubMed

    Davisson, Muriel T; Bergstrom, David E; Reinholdt, Laura G; Donahue, Leah Rae

    2012-06-01

    Historically, spontaneous mutations in mice have served as valuable models of heritable human diseases, contributing substantially to our understanding of both disease mechanisms and basic biological pathways. While advances in molecular technologies have improved our ability to create mouse models of human disease through targeted mutagenesis and transgenesis, spontaneous mutations continue to provide valuable research tools for discovery of novel genes and functions. In addition, the genetic defects caused by spontaneous mutations are molecularly similar to mutations in the human genome and, therefore often produce phenotypes that more closely resemble those characteristic of human disease than do genetically engineered mutations. Due to the rarity with which spontaneous mutations arise and the animal intensive nature of their genetic analysis, large-scale spontaneous mutation analysis has traditionally been limited to large mammalian genetics institutes. More recently, ENU mutagenesis and new screening methods have increased the rate of mutant strain discovery, and high-throughput DNA sequencing has enabled rapid identification of the underlying genes and their causative mutations. Here, we discuss the continued value of spontaneous mutations for biomedical research.

  18. Sharing the benefits of genetic resources: from biodiversity to human genetics.

    PubMed

    Schroeder, Doris; Lasén-Díaz, Carolina

    2006-12-01

    Benefit sharing aims to achieve an equitable exchange between the granting of access to a genetic resource and the provision of compensation. The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), adopted at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, is the only international legal instrument setting out obligations for sharing the benefits derived from the use of biodiversity. The CBD excludes human genetic resources from its scope, however, this article considers whether it should be expanded to include those resources, so as to enable research subjects to claim a share of the benefits to be negotiated on a case-by-case basis. Our conclusion on this question is: 'No, the CBD should not be expanded to include human genetic resources.' There are essential differences between human and non-human genetic resources, and, in the context of research on humans, an essentially fair exchange model is already available between the health care industry and research subjects. Those who contribute to research should receive benefits in the form of accessible new health care products and services, suitable for local health needs and linked to economic prosperity (e.g. jobs). When this exchange model does not apply, as is often the case in developing countries, individually negotiated benefit sharing agreements between researchers and research subjects should not be used as 'window dressing'. Instead, national governments should focus their finances on the best economic investment they could make; the investment in population health and health research as outlined by the World Health Organization's Commission on Macroeconomics and Health; whilst international barriers to such spending need to be removed.

  19. Human subjects research handbook: Protecting human research subjects. Second edition

    SciTech Connect

    1996-01-30

    This handbook serves as a guide to understanding and implementing the Federal regulations and US DOE Orders established to protect human research subjects. Material in this handbook is directed towards new and continuing institutional review board (IRB) members, researchers, institutional administrators, DOE officials, and others who may be involved or interested in human subjects research. It offers comprehensive overview of the various requirements, procedures, and issues relating to human subject research today.

  20. Population Genomics and the Statistical Values of Race: An Interdisciplinary Perspective on the Biological Classification of Human Populations and Implications for Clinical Genetic Epidemiological Research

    PubMed Central

    Maglo, Koffi N.; Mersha, Tesfaye B.; Martin, Lisa J.

    2016-01-01

    The biological status and biomedical significance of the concept of race as applied to humans continue to be contentious issues despite the use of advanced statistical and clustering methods to determine continental ancestry. It is thus imperative for researchers to understand the limitations as well as potential uses of the concept of race in biology and biomedicine. This paper deals with the theoretical assumptions behind cluster analysis in human population genomics. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, it demonstrates that the hypothesis that attributes the clustering of human populations to “frictional” effects of landform barriers at continental boundaries is empirically incoherent. It then contrasts the scientific status of the “cluster” and “cline” constructs in human population genomics, and shows how cluster may be instrumentally produced. It also shows how statistical values of race vindicate Darwin's argument that race is evolutionarily meaningless. Finally, the paper explains why, due to spatiotemporal parameters, evolutionary forces, and socio-cultural factors influencing population structure, continental ancestry may be pragmatically relevant to global and public health genomics. Overall, this work demonstrates that, from a biological systematic and evolutionary taxonomical perspective, human races/continental groups or clusters have no natural meaning or objective biological reality. In fact, the utility of racial categorizations in research and in clinics can be explained by spatiotemporal parameters, socio-cultural factors, and evolutionary forces affecting disease causation and treatment response. PMID:26925096

  1. Population Genomics and the Statistical Values of Race: An Interdisciplinary Perspective on the Biological Classification of Human Populations and Implications for Clinical Genetic Epidemiological Research.

    PubMed

    Maglo, Koffi N; Mersha, Tesfaye B; Martin, Lisa J

    2016-01-01

    The biological status and biomedical significance of the concept of race as applied to humans continue to be contentious issues despite the use of advanced statistical and clustering methods to determine continental ancestry. It is thus imperative for researchers to understand the limitations as well as potential uses of the concept of race in biology and biomedicine. This paper deals with the theoretical assumptions behind cluster analysis in human population genomics. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, it demonstrates that the hypothesis that attributes the clustering of human populations to "frictional" effects of landform barriers at continental boundaries is empirically incoherent. It then contrasts the scientific status of the "cluster" and "cline" constructs in human population genomics, and shows how cluster may be instrumentally produced. It also shows how statistical values of race vindicate Darwin's argument that race is evolutionarily meaningless. Finally, the paper explains why, due to spatiotemporal parameters, evolutionary forces, and socio-cultural factors influencing population structure, continental ancestry may be pragmatically relevant to global and public health genomics. Overall, this work demonstrates that, from a biological systematic and evolutionary taxonomical perspective, human races/continental groups or clusters have no natural meaning or objective biological reality. In fact, the utility of racial categorizations in research and in clinics can be explained by spatiotemporal parameters, socio-cultural factors, and evolutionary forces affecting disease causation and treatment response.

  2. Human fertility, molecular genetics, and natural selection in modern societies.

    PubMed

    Tropf, Felix C; Stulp, Gert; Barban, Nicola; Visscher, Peter M; Yang, Jian; Snieder, Harold; Mills, Melinda C

    2015-01-01

    Research on genetic influences on human fertility outcomes such as number of children ever born (NEB) or the age at first childbirth (AFB) has been solely based on twin and family-designs that suffer from problematic assumptions and practical limitations. The current study exploits recent advances in the field of molecular genetics by applying the genomic-relationship-matrix based restricted maximum likelihood (GREML) methods to quantify for the first time the extent to which common genetic variants influence the NEB and the AFB of women. Using data from the UK and the Netherlands (N = 6,758), results show significant additive genetic effects on both traits explaining 10% (SE = 5) of the variance in the NEB and 15% (SE = 4) in the AFB. We further find a significant negative genetic correlation between AFB and NEB in the pooled sample of -0.62 (SE = 0.27, p-value = 0.02). This finding implies that individuals with genetic predispositions for an earlier AFB had a reproductive advantage and that natural selection operated not only in historical, but also in contemporary populations. The observed postponement in the AFB across the past century in Europe contrasts with these findings, suggesting an evolutionary override by environmental effects and underscoring that evolutionary predictions in modern human societies are not straight forward. It emphasizes the necessity for an integrative research design from the fields of genetics and social sciences in order to understand and predict fertility outcomes. Finally, our results suggest that we may be able to find genetic variants associated with human fertility when conducting GWAS-meta analyses with sufficient sample size.

  3. Advances in Human Neuroconnectivity Research

    PubMed Central

    Cservenka, Anita; Alarcón, Gabriela; Jones, Scott A.; Nagel, Bonnie J.

    2015-01-01

    Recent advances in brain imaging have allowed researchers to further study the networks connecting brain regions. Specifically, research examining the functioning of these networks in groups with a genetic predisposition for alcoholism has found atypical circuitry in the brains of such individuals. Further research with larger sample sizes and multimodal method integration are necessary to confirm these intriguing findings. PMID:26259090

  4. Genetic and molecular ecotoxicology: a research framework.

    PubMed

    Anderson, S; Sadinski, W; Shugart, L; Brussard, P; Depledge, M; Ford, T; Hose, J; Stegeman, J; Suk, W; Wirgin, I

    1994-12-01

    Participants at the Napa Conference on Genetic and Molecular Ecotoxicology assessed the status of this field in light of heightened concerns about the genetic effects of exposure to hazardous substances and recent advancements in our capabilities to measure those effects. We present here a synthesis of the ideas discussed throughout the conference, including definitions of important concepts in the field and critical research needs and opportunities. While there were many opinions expressed on these topics, there was general agreement that there are substantive new opportunities to improve the impact of genetic and molecular ecotoxicology on prediction of sublethal effects of exposure to hazardous substances. Future studies should emphasize integration of genetic ecotoxicology, ecological genetics, and molecular biology and should be directed toward improving our understanding of the ecological implications of genotoxic responses. Ecological implications may be assessed at either the population or ecosystem level; however, a population-level focus may be most pragmatic. Recent technical advancements in measuring genetic and molecular responses to toxicant exposure will spur rapid progress. These new techniques have considerable promise for increasing our understanding of both mechanisms of toxicity on genes or gene products and the relevance of detrimental effects to individual fitness.

  5. [Current thought on hereditary transmission and human genetics].

    PubMed

    Snelders, Stephen; Pieters, Toine

    2003-01-01

    On the basis of a review of the historiography on thought about hereditary transmission and human genetics in the 20th century in Britain, the United States, Germany, Russia, Sweden, and the Netherlands, a new research perspective is formulated. Concepts of heredity and their use in society have been various and diverse. Definitions of heredity and of the influence of 'nature' and 'nurture' in shaping genetic material have significantly changed. In the new research perspective the focus is directed to the role of a broad range of concepts of heredity in framing debates and practices around health, disease, and behaviour, including but not exclusively the concepts of Mendelian genetics, neo-Lamarckism', and concepts prevalent in eugenic movements. A research programme is outlined that is directed at specific problem fields in health care (e.g. alcoholism), and uses various sources to examine the historical dynamics in medical and public spheres.

  6. Classical and Molecular Genetic Research on General Cognitive Ability.

    PubMed

    McGue, Matt; Gottesman, Irving I

    2015-01-01

    Arguably, no psychological variable has received more attention from behavioral geneticists than what has been called "general cognitive ability" (as well as "general intelligence" or "g"), and for good reason. GCA has a rich correlational network, implying that it may play an important role in multiple domains of functioning. GCA is highly correlated with various indicators of educational attainment, yet its predictive utility is not limited to academic achievement. It is also correlated with work performance, navigating the complexities of everyday life, the absence of various social pathologies (such as criminal convictions), and even health and mortality. Although the causal basis for these associations is not always known, it is nonetheless the case that research on GCA has the potential to provide insights into the origins of a wide range of important social outcomes. In this essay, our discussion of why GCA is considered a fundamentally important dimension of behavior on which humans differ is followed by a look at behavioral genetics research on CGA. We summarize behavioral genetics research that has sought to identify and quantify the total contributions of genetic and environmental factors to individual differences in GCA as well as molecular genetic research that has sought to identify genetic variants that underlie inherited effects. © 2015 The Hastings Center.

  7. Genetics of human congenital urinary bladder disease.

    PubMed

    Woolf, Adrian S; Stuart, Helen M; Newman, William G

    2014-03-01

    Lower urinary tract and/or kidney malformations are collectively the most common cause of end-stage renal disease in children, and they are also likely to account for a major subset of young adults requiring renal replacement therapy. Advances have been made regarding the discovery of the genetic causes of human kidney malformations. Indeed, testing for mutations of key nephrogenesis genes is now feasible for patients seen in nephrology clinics. Unfortunately, less is known about defined genetic bases of human lower urinary tract anomalies. The focus of this review is the genetic bases of congenital structural and functional disorders of the urinary bladder. Three are highlighted. First, prune belly syndrome, where mutations of CHRM3, encoding an acetylcholine receptor, HNF1B, encoding a transcription factor, and ACTA2, encoding a cytoskeletal protein, have been reported. Second, the urofacial syndrome, where mutations of LRIG2 and HPSE2, encoding proteins localised in nerves invading the fetal bladder, have been defined. Finally, we review emerging evidence that bladder exstrophy may have genetic bases, including variants in the TP63 promoter. These genetic discoveries provide a new perspective on a group of otherwise poorly understood diseases.

  8. Genetically modified pigs to model human diseases.

    PubMed

    Flisikowska, Tatiana; Kind, Alexander; Schnieke, Angelika

    2014-02-01

    Genetically modified mice are powerful tools to investigate the molecular basis of many human diseases. Mice are, however, of limited value for preclinical studies, because they differ significantly from humans in size, general physiology, anatomy and lifespan. Considerable efforts are, thus, being made to develop alternative animal models for a range of human diseases. These promise powerful new resources that will aid the development of new diagnostics, medicines and medical procedures. Here, we provide a comprehensive review of genetically modified porcine models described in the scientific literature: various cancers, cystic fibrosis, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, autosomal polycystic kidney disease, Huntington’s disease, spinal muscular atrophy, haemophilia A, X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency, retinitis pigmentosa, Stargardt disease, Alzheimer’s disease, various forms of diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular diseases.

  9. Molecular genetics of human lactase deficiencies.

    PubMed

    Järvelä, Irma; Torniainen, Suvi; Kolho, Kaija-Leena

    2009-01-01

    Lactase non-persistence (adult-type hypolactasia) is present in more than half of the human population and is caused by the down-regulation of lactase enzyme activity during childhood. Congenital lactase deficiency (CLD) is a rare severe gastrointestinal disorder of new-borns enriched in the Finnish population. Both lactase deficiencies are autosomal recessive traits and characterized by diminished expression of lactase activity in the intestine. Genetic variants underlying both forms have been identified. Here we review the current understanding of the molecular defects of human lactase deficiencies and their phenotype-genotype correlation, the implications on clinical practice, and the understanding of their function and role in human evolution.

  10. Genetic Heterogeneity in Algerian Human Populations

    PubMed Central

    Deba, Tahria; Calafell, Francesc; Benhamamouch, Soraya; Comas, David

    2015-01-01

    The demographic history of human populations in North Africa has been characterized by complex processes of admixture and isolation that have modeled its current gene pool. Diverse genetic ancestral components with different origins (autochthonous, European, Middle Eastern, and sub-Saharan) and genetic heterogeneity in the region have been described. In this complex genetic landscape, Algeria, the largest country in Africa, has been poorly covered, with most of the studies using a single Algerian sample. In order to evaluate the genetic heterogeneity of Algeria, Y-chromosome, mtDNA and autosomal genome-wide makers have been analyzed in several Berber- and Arab-speaking groups. Our results show that the genetic heterogeneity found in Algeria is not correlated with geography or linguistics, challenging the idea of Berber groups being genetically isolated and Arab groups open to gene flow. In addition, we have found that external sources of gene flow into North Africa have been carried more often by females than males, while the North African autochthonous component is more frequent in paternally transmitted genome regions. Our results highlight the different demographic history revealed by different markers and urge to be cautious when deriving general conclusions from partial genomic information or from single samples as representatives of the total population of a region. PMID:26402429

  11. Genetic Susceptibility to Fungal Infections in Humans.

    PubMed

    Lionakis, Michail S

    2012-03-01

    Most fungal infections in humans occur in the setting of iatrogenic immunosuppression or HIV infection. In the absence of these factors, fungi cause mild, self-limited infections that typically involve mucocutaneous surfaces. Hence, when persistent or recurrent mucocutaneous infections (chronic mucocutaneous candidiasis [CMC]) or invasive fungal infections (IFIs) develop in a "normal" host, they are indicative of genetic defects causing innate or adaptive immune dysfunction. In this review, recent developments concerning genetic and immunologic factors that affect the risk for IFIs and CMC are critically discussed.

  12. Genetic Susceptibility to Fungal Infections in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Lionakis, Michail S.

    2012-01-01

    Most fungal infections in humans occur in the setting of iatrogenic immunosuppression or HIV infection. In the absence of these factors, fungi cause mild, self-limited infections that typically involve mucocutaneous surfaces. Hence, when persistent or recurrent mucocutaneous infections (chronic mucocutaneous candidiasis [CMC]) or invasive fungal infections (IFIs) develop in a “normal” host, they are indicative of genetic defects causing innate or adaptive immune dysfunction. In this review, recent developments concerning genetic and immunologic factors that affect the risk for IFIs and CMC are critically discussed. PMID:23087779

  13. Genetics Research Discovered in a Bestseller | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    By Nancy Parrish, Staff Writer One morning in early January, Amar Klar sat down at his computer and found an e-mail with a curious message from a colleague. While reading a bestselling novel, The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides, his colleague, a professor at Princeton University, found a description of research on yeast genetics that was surprisingly similar to Klar’s early research. Even the laboratory in the novel was reminiscent of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, where Klar had conducted his research.

  14. Genetics Research Discovered in a Bestseller | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    By Nancy Parrish, Staff Writer One morning in early January, Amar Klar sat down at his computer and found an e-mail with a curious message from a colleague. While reading a bestselling novel, The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides, his colleague, a professor at Princeton University, found a description of research on yeast genetics that was surprisingly similar to Klar’s early research. Even the laboratory in the novel was reminiscent of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, where Klar had conducted his research.

  15. Genetic and environmental factors influencing human diseases with telomere dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Ly, Hinh

    2009-01-01

    Both genetic and environmental factors have been implicated in the mechanism underlying the pathogenesis of serious and fatal forms of human blood disorder (acquired aplastic anemia, AA) and lung disease (idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, IPF). We and other researchers have recently shown that naturally occurring mutations in genes encoding the telomere maintenance complex (telomerase) may predispose patients to the development of AA or IPF. Epidemiological data have shown that environmental factors can also cause and/or exacerbate the pathogenesis of these diseases. The exact mechanisms that these germ-line mutations in telomere maintenance genes coupled with environmental insults lead to ineffective hematopoiesis in AA and lung scarring in IPF are not well understood, however. In this article, we provide a summary of evidence for environmental and genetic factors influencing the diseases. These studies provide important insights into the interplay between environmental and genetic factors leading to human diseases with telomere dysfunction. PMID:19684885

  16. A global reference for human genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Auton, Adam; Brooks, Lisa D; Durbin, Richard M; Garrison, Erik P; Kang, Hyun Min; Korbel, Jan O; Marchini, Jonathan L; McCarthy, Shane; McVean, Gil A; Abecasis, Gonçalo R

    2015-10-01

    The 1000 Genomes Project set out to provide a comprehensive description of common human genetic variation by applying whole-genome sequencing to a diverse set of individuals from multiple populations. Here we report completion of the project, having reconstructed the genomes of 2,504 individuals from 26 populations using a combination of low-coverage whole-genome sequencing, deep exome sequencing, and dense microarray genotyping. We characterized a broad spectrum of genetic variation, in total over 88 million variants (84.7 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 3.6 million short insertions/deletions (indels), and 60,000 structural variants), all phased onto high-quality haplotypes. This resource includes >99% of SNP variants with a frequency of >1% for a variety of ancestries. We describe the distribution of genetic variation across the global sample, and discuss the implications for common disease studies.

  17. Dissecting the genetic architecture of human personality.

    PubMed

    Munafò, Marcus R; Flint, Jonathan

    2011-09-01

    The first candidate gene studies of human personality promised much but, in the fifteen years since their publication, have delivered little in the way of clear evidence for the contribution of specific genetic variants to observed variation in personality traits. This is most likely due to the very small effects conferred by individual loci. The advent of genome-wide association studies has brought growing awareness that high levels of statistical stringency, very large sample sizes, and independent replication will be minimum requirements for future genetic studies of personality. At the same time, evidence from other fields indicates that the genetic architecture of personality is likely to consist of the combined effect of many hundreds, if not thousands, of small effect loci.

  18. A global reference for human genetic variation

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The 1000 Genomes Project set out to provide a comprehensive description of common human genetic variation by applying whole-genome sequencing to a diverse set of individuals from multiple populations. Here we report completion of the project, having reconstructed the genomes of 2,504 individuals from 26 populations using a combination of low-coverage whole-genome sequencing, deep exome sequencing, and dense microarray genotyping. We characterized a broad spectrum of genetic variation, in total over 88 million variants (84.7 million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), 3.6 million short insertions/deletions (indels), and 60,000 structural variants), all phased onto high-quality haplotypes. This resource includes >99% of SNP variants with a frequency of >1% for a variety of ancestries. We describe the distribution of genetic variation across the global sample, and discuss the implications for common disease studies. PMID:26432245

  19. Functional Analysis of the Human Genome:. Study of Genetic Disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsui, Lap-Chee

    2003-04-01

    I will divide my remarks into 3 parts. First, I will give a brief summary of the Human Genome Project. Second, I will describe our work on human chromosome 7 to illustrate how we could contribute to the Project and disease research. Third, I would like to bring across the argument that study of genetic disease is an integral component of the Human Genome Project. In particular, I will use cystic fibrosis as an example to elaborate why I consider disease study is a part of functional genomics.

  20. [Network Research on Human Papillomavirus].

    PubMed

    Almeida-Gutiérrez, Eduardo; Paniagua, Ramón; Furuya, María ElenaYuriko

    2015-01-01

    In order to increase the research in important health questions at a national and institutional levels, the Human Papillomavirus Research Network of the Health Research Coordination of the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social offers this supplement with the purpose of assisting patients that daily look for attention due to the human papillomavirus or to cervical cancer.

  1. [Constant or break? On the relations between human genetics and eugenics in the Twentieth Century].

    PubMed

    Germann, Pascal

    2015-07-01

    The history of human genetics has been a neglected topic in history of science and medicine for a long time. Only recently, have medical historians begun to pay more attention to the history of human heredity. An important research question deals with the interconnections between human genetics and eugenics. This paper addresses this question: By focusing on a Swiss case study, the investigation of the heredity of goiter, I will argue that there existed close but also ambiguous relations between heredity research and eugenics in the twentieth century. Studies on human heredity often produced evidence that challenged eugenic aims and ideas. Concurrently, however, these studies fostered visions of genetic improvement of human populations.

  2. Human Genetic Engineering: A Survey of Student Value Stances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Sara McCormack; And Others

    1975-01-01

    Assesses the values of high school and college students relative to human genetic engineering and recommends that biology educators explore instructional strategies merging human genetic information with value clarification techniques. (LS)

  3. Human Genetics Education: A Look to the Future.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biological Sciences Curriculum Study Journal, 1979

    1979-01-01

    Examines the status of human genetics education. Provides an updated report of the work being done at the BSCS Center for Education in Human and Medical Genetics. Includes reports of regional conferences and of West German educational programs. (MA)

  4. Human Genetic Engineering: A Survey of Student Value Stances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Sara McCormack; And Others

    1975-01-01

    Assesses the values of high school and college students relative to human genetic engineering and recommends that biology educators explore instructional strategies merging human genetic information with value clarification techniques. (LS)

  5. Human genetic technology: who shall control?

    PubMed

    Blank, R H

    1984-01-01

    The biotechnical "revolution" has fast come upon us. It promises to produce both substantial benefits and difficult dilemmas for individuals and society. Despite the growing attention being paid to biotechnology, a major unanswered question is who shall control the development and use of the powerful array of human genetic and reproductive innovations. Should the decisions be left to individual consumers and private industry or should they be made by the government or other social institutions? After briefly reviewing development in human genetics and reproduction and describing trends toward commercialization of them, this article discusses the dilemmas these trends raise for a democratic society. It argues for the urgent need to delineate societal goals and priorities for the future and for technology assessment as early as possible in the developmental process. The article concludes by presenting some examples of the social policy problems now emerging.

  6. Genetic basis of human circadian rhythm disorders.

    PubMed

    Jones, Christopher R; Huang, Angela L; Ptáček, Louis J; Fu, Ying-Hui

    2013-05-01

    Circadian rhythm disorders constitute a group of phenotypes that usually present as altered sleep-wake schedules. Until a human genetics approach was applied to investigate these traits, the genetic components regulating human circadian rhythm and sleep behaviors remained mysterious. Steady advances in the last decade have dramatically improved our understanding of the genes involved in circadian rhythmicity and sleep regulation. Finding these genes presents new opportunities to use a wide range of approaches, including in vitro molecular studies and in vivo animal modeling, to elevate our understanding of how sleep and circadian rhythms are regulated and maintained. Ultimately, this knowledge will reveal how circadian and sleep disruption contribute to various ailments and shed light on how best to maintain and recover good health.

  7. Gene Conversion in Human Genetic Disease

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jian-Min; Férec, Claude; Cooper, David N.

    2010-01-01

    Gene conversion is a specific type of homologous recombination that involves the unidirectional transfer of genetic material from a ‘donor’ sequence to a highly homologous ‘acceptor’. We have recently reviewed the molecular mechanisms underlying gene conversion, explored the key part that this process has played in fashioning extant human genes, and performed a meta-analysis of gene-conversion events known to have caused human genetic disease. Here we shall briefly summarize some of the latest developments in the study of pathogenic gene conversion events, including (i) the emerging idea of minimal efficient sequence homology (MESH) for homologous recombination, (ii) the local DNA sequence features that appear to predispose to gene conversion, (iii) a mechanistic comparison of gene conversion and transient hypermutability, and (iv) recently reported examples of pathogenic gene conversion events. PMID:24710102

  8. Basic Science Research and the Protection of Human Research Participants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eiseman, Elisa

    2001-03-01

    Technological advances in basic biological research have been instrumental in recent biomedical discoveries, such as in the understanding and treatment of cancer, HIV/AIDS, and heart disease. However, many of these advances also raise several new ethical challenges. For example, genetic research may pose no physical risk beyond that of obtaining the initial blood sample, yet it can pose significant psychological and economic risks to research participants, such as stigmatization, discrimination in insurance and employment, invasion of privacy, or breach of confidentiality. These harms may occur even when investigators do not directly interact with the person whose DNA they are studying. Moreover, this type of basic research also raises broader questions, such as what is the definition of a human subject, and what kinds of expertise do Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) need to review the increasingly diverse types of research made possible by these advances in technology. The National Bioethics Advisory Commission (NBAC), a presidentially appointed federal advisory committee, has addressed these and other ethical, scientific and policy issues that arise in basic science research involving human participants. Two of its six reports, in particular, have proposed recommendations in this regard. "Research Involving Human Biological Materials: Ethical and Policy Guidance" addresses the basic research use of human tissues, cells and DNA and the protection of human participants in this type of research. In "Ethical and Policy Issues in the Oversight of Human Research" NBAC proposes a definition of research involving human participants that would apply to all scientific disciplines, including physical, biological, and social sciences, as well as the humanities and related professions, such as business and law. Both of these reports make it clear that the protection of research participants is key to conducting ethically sound research. By ensuring that all participants in

  9. Abortion and the ethics of genetic sexual orientation research.

    PubMed

    Murphy, T F

    1995-01-01

    Research is being conducted to determine whether there is a genetic basis for homoerotic sexual orientation in adults. Reports indicate that such a basis may exist. Some homosexual men and women have welcomed the possibility of biological confirmation of their sexual orientation and subsequent behavior. If human sexual orientation were proven to be genetically determined, many homosexuals would not feel compelled to justify their sexuality. One would simply be born either homosexual or heterosexual. Others, however, worry that the ability to identify homosexuality through genetic markers may be used prejudicially against homosexuals. German sexologist Gunter Schmidt has argued that since society has yet to fully accept homosexuals and homosexuality, research into the possible causes of homosexuality is potentially dangerous to gay men and women. In the same vein, gay studies scholar David Halperin argues that the search for a scientific etiology of sexual orientation is a homophobic venture which should be clearly seen as such. Considerable concern therefore exists that sexual orientation research may lead to genocide against homosexuals through the practice of selective abortion on the basis of a fetus's genetically identified sexual orientation. The author, however, is skeptical that a simple genetic test is on the horizon which is capable of determining an individual's sexual orientation, and were such a test available, that it would necessarily be used only to the detriment of homosexuals. He does acknowledge that such a test could be used prejudicially with regard to access to employment, insurance, and other social goods, but it nonetheless remains unjustified to completely forbid genetic sexual orientation research. A sexual orientation test and abortion, and the ethics of sexual orientation research are discussed.

  10. Patenting human genetic material: refocusing the debate

    PubMed Central

    Caulfield, Timothy; Gold, E. Richard; Cho, Mildred K.

    2008-01-01

    The biotechnology industry has become firmly established over the past twenty years and gene patents have played an important part in this phenomenon. However, concerns have been raised over the patentability of human genetic material, through public protests and international statements, but to little effect. Here we discuss some of these concerns, the patent authorities’ response to them, and ways in which to address these issues and to move the debate forward using current legal structures. PMID:11252752

  11. Advances in gene technology: Human genetic disorders

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, W.A.; Ahmad, F.; Black, S.; Schultz, J.; Whelan, W.J.

    1984-01-01

    This book discusses the papers presented at the conference on the subject of ''advances in Gene technology: Human genetic disorders''. Molecular biology of various carcinomas and inheritance of metabolic diseases is discussed and technology advancement in diagnosis of hereditary diseases is described. Some of the titles discussed are-Immunoglobulin genes translocation and diagnosis; hemophilia; oncogenes; oncogenic transformations; experimental data on mice, hamsters, birds carcinomas and sarcomas.

  12. Human pain and genetics: some basics

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Human pain causes untold misery and suffering, with major impact on functioning and resources. Recent advances in genetics have revealed that subtle changes in DNA could partly explain the variation in individual differences in pain. Various genes encoding for receptors are now known to play a major role in the sensitivity, perception and expression of pain. The fields of epigenetics and proteomics hold promises in the way pain could be treated and managed in future. PMID:26516521

  13. The commercialization of human genetics: profits and problems.

    PubMed

    Caulfield, T

    1998-04-01

    Private-sector funding is becoming increasingly important to genetic scientists and clinicians, and the number of academic-industry collaborations is growing rapidly. Furthermore, genetics has become an important tool for the healthcare industry, as the genomes of humans and other organisms are mined for new diagnostic tests and drug leads. Potentially, this is a win-win situation: academic research gets a funding boost; industry benefits from academic research; and humankind benefits from the products of these liaisons. But these benefits do not come without cost. This article explores these costs and examines whether the commercialization of academic research is compromising academic freedom, progress in clinical research, and our attitudes to normal good health.

  14. Office for Human Research Protections

    MedlinePlus

    ... the Secretary’s Advisory Committee on Human Research Protections. International Learn how OHRP promotes ... Recent Announcements "Institutional Review Board (IRB) Written Procedures: Guidance for Institutions and ...

  15. The challenges of genetic tests for human behavior.

    PubMed

    Gershon, Elliot S

    2002-01-01

    To review the potential benefits and adverse effects of genetic tests that may develop, that effectively predict mental illness or variation from the norm on behavior traits. A review is offered of the history of genetic-based political policies and racial discrimination. The current status of genetic research in mental disorders is described. Anticipated genetic progress, and derivative tests and limits on their predictive power are considered. There does exist a potential for invidious stigmatization and discrimination, based on genotypes of individuals and allele frequencies in communities, in various transactions such as health care access, employment and education, as well as in more intimate decisions including choice of spouse and decisions to become a parent. The major uses of valid genetic tests for human behavioral traits will be for development of knowledge on pathophysiology of illness, and for development of new treatment and educational strategies to deal with illness. Some extension of genetic tests into predictions about specific individuals may well occur. Awareness of the potential for discrimination, and a determination to develop culturally sensitive and fair applications of genetic tests, is required to avoid adverse effects on individuals and communities.

  16. Human Research Program Requirements Document. Human Research Program Revision E

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vargas, Paul

    2011-01-01

    This document defines, documents, and allocates the Human Research Program (HRP) requirements to the HRP Program Elements. It also establishes the flow of requirements from the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD) and the Office of the Chief Health and Medical Officer (OCHMO) down to the various HRP Program Elements to ensure that human research and technology countermeasure investments support the delivery of countermeasures and technologies that satisfy HEOMD's and OCHMO's exploration mission requirements.

  17. HUMAN HEALTH RESEARCH STRATEGY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The mission of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is to protect public health and safeguard the environment. Risk assessment is an integral part of this mission in that it identifies and characterizes environmentally related human health problems. The Human Health Re...

  18. HUMAN HEALTH RESEARCH STRATEGY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The mission of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is to protect public health and safeguard the environment. Risk assessment is an integral part of this mission in that it identifies and characterizes environmentally related human health problems. The Human Health Re...

  19. Database tools in genetic diseases research.

    PubMed

    Bianco, Anna Monica; Marcuzzi, Annalisa; Zanin, Valentina; Girardelli, Martina; Vuch, Josef; Crovella, Sergio

    2013-02-01

    The knowledge of the human genome is in continuous progression: a large number of databases have been developed to make meaningful connections among worldwide scientific discoveries. This paper reviews bioinformatics resources and database tools specialized in disseminating information regarding genetic disorders. The databases described are useful for managing sample sequences, gene expression and post-transcriptional regulation. In relation to data sets available from genome-wide association studies, we describe databases that could be the starting point for developing studies in the field of complex diseases, particularly those in which the causal genes are difficult to identify.

  20. Attitudes towards the use of genetically modified animals in research.

    PubMed

    Schuppli, Catherine A; Weary, Daniel M

    2010-11-01

    Here we provide the first experimental evidence that public concerns about the use of animals in research are accentuated when genetically modified (GM) animals are used. Using an online survey, we probed participant views on two uses of pigs as research animals (to reduce agricultural pollution or to improve organ transplant success in humans) with and without GM. We surveyed 327 animal technicians, researchers, advocates, university students and others. In both scenarios and across demographics, support dropped off when the research required the use of GM pigs or GM corn. For example, 66% of participants supported using pigs to reduce phosphorus pollution, but this declined to 49% when the pigs were fed GM corn and to 20% when the research required the creation of a new GM line of pigs. Those involved in animal research were more consistently supportive compared to those who were not or those who were vegetarians.

  1. Generation of Transgenic Monkeys with Human Inherited Genetic Disease

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Anthony W.S; Yang, Shang-Hsun

    2009-01-01

    Modeling human diseases using nonhuman primates including chimpanzee, rhesus, cynomolgus, marmoset and squirrel monkeys has been reported in the past decades. Due to the high similarity between nonhuman primates and humans, including genome constitution, cognitive behavioral functions, anatomical structure, metabolic, reproductive, and brain functions; nonhuman primates have played an important role in understanding physiological functions of the human body, clarifying the underlying mechanism of human diseases, and the development of novel treatments for human diseases. However, nonhuman primate research has been restricted to cognitive, behavioral, biochemical and pharmacological approaches of human diseases due to the limitation of gene transfer technology in nonhuman primates. The recent advancement in transgenic technology that has led to the generation of the first transgenic monkey in 2001 and a transgenic monkey model of Huntington's disease (HD) in 2008 has changed that focus. The creation of transgenic HD monkeys that replicate key pathological features of human HD patients further suggests the crucial role of nonhuman primates in the future development of biomedicine. These successes have opened the door to genetic manipulation in nonhuman primates and a new era in modeling human inherited genetic disorders. We focused on the procedures in creating transgenic Huntington's disease monkeys, but our work can be applied to transgenesis in other nonhuman primate species. PMID:19467335

  2. Genetically Encoded Voltage Indicators in Circulation Research

    PubMed Central

    Kaestner, Lars; Tian, Qinghai; Kaiser, Elisabeth; Xian, Wenying; Müller, Andreas; Oberhofer, Martin; Ruppenthal, Sandra; Sinnecker, Daniel; Tsutsui, Hidekazu; Miyawaki, Atsushi; Moretti, Alessandra; Lipp, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Membrane potentials display the cellular status of non-excitable cells and mediate communication between excitable cells via action potentials. The use of genetically encoded biosensors employing fluorescent proteins allows a non-invasive biocompatible way to read out the membrane potential in cardiac myocytes and other cells of the circulation system. Although the approaches to design such biosensors date back to the time when the first fluorescent-protein based Förster Resonance Energy Transfer (FRET) sensors were constructed, it took 15 years before reliable sensors became readily available. Here, we review different developments of genetically encoded membrane potential sensors. Furthermore, it is shown how such sensors can be used in pharmacological screening applications as well as in circulation related basic biomedical research. Potentials and limitations will be discussed and perspectives of possible future developments will be provided. PMID:26370981

  3. Applications of genetic programming in cancer research.

    PubMed

    Worzel, William P; Yu, Jianjun; Almal, Arpit A; Chinnaiyan, Arul M

    2009-02-01

    The theory of Darwinian evolution is the fundamental keystones of modern biology. Late in the last century, computer scientists began adapting its principles, in particular natural selection, to complex computational challenges, leading to the emergence of evolutionary algorithms. The conceptual model of selective pressure and recombination in evolutionary algorithms allow scientists to efficiently search high dimensional space for solutions to complex problems. In the last decade, genetic programming has been developed and extensively applied for analysis of molecular data to classify cancer subtypes and characterize the mechanisms of cancer pathogenesis and development. This article reviews current successes using genetic programming and discusses its potential impact in cancer research and treatment in the near future.

  4. Applications of Genetic Programming in Cancer Research

    PubMed Central

    Worzel, William P.; Yu, Jianjun; Almal, Arpit A.; Chinnaiyan, Arul M.

    2012-01-01

    The theory of Darwinian evolution is the fundamental keystones of modern biology. Late in the last century, computer scientists began adapting its principles, in particular natural selection, to complex computational challenges, leading to the emergence of evolutionary algorithms. The conceptual model of selective pressure and recombination in evolutionary algorithms allows scientists to efficiently search high dimensional space for solutions to complex problems. In the last decade, genetic programming has been developed and extensively applied for analysis of molecular data to classify cancer subtypes and characterize the mechanisms of cancer pathogenesis and development. This article reviews current successes using genetic programming and discusses its potential impact in cancer research and treatment in the near future. PMID:18929677

  5. [SOME RESULTS OF MOLECULAR GENETIC RESEARCHES OF AGING AND LONGEVITY].

    PubMed

    Mustafina, O E; Somova, R Sh

    2015-01-01

    This review is devoted to the description of research achievements in genetics of aging and longevity. It represents a certain interest for understanding of a problems of aging as a whole. There is a huge amount of results of diverse genetic studies of aging and longevity. Studies were performed with using different experimental strategies on model organisms or samples from different human populations of the world. The search for aging and longevity genes was carried out within international consortiums. The first results of whole genome sequences of super-centenarians were received. The genes influencing life expectancy were revealed in organisms of different systematic groups. Many of these genes are evolutionarily conservative. Associations between APOE, FOXO1A, FOXO3A, AKT1 gene polymorphisms and human longevity were confirmed in independent studies.

  6. Mapping human genetic diversity in Asia.

    PubMed

    Abdulla, Mahmood Ameen; Ahmed, Ikhlak; Assawamakin, Anunchai; Bhak, Jong; Brahmachari, Samir K; Calacal, Gayvelline C; Chaurasia, Amit; Chen, Chien-Hsiun; Chen, Jieming; Chen, Yuan-Tsong; Chu, Jiayou; Cutiongco-de la Paz, Eva Maria C; De Ungria, Maria Corazon A; Delfin, Frederick C; Edo, Juli; Fuchareon, Suthat; Ghang, Ho; Gojobori, Takashi; Han, Junsong; Ho, Sheng-Feng; Hoh, Boon Peng; Huang, Wei; Inoko, Hidetoshi; Jha, Pankaj; Jinam, Timothy A; Jin, Li; Jung, Jongsun; Kangwanpong, Daoroong; Kampuansai, Jatupol; Kennedy, Giulia C; Khurana, Preeti; Kim, Hyung-Lae; Kim, Kwangjoong; Kim, Sangsoo; Kim, Woo-Yeon; Kimm, Kuchan; Kimura, Ryosuke; Koike, Tomohiro; Kulawonganunchai, Supasak; Kumar, Vikrant; Lai, Poh San; Lee, Jong-Young; Lee, Sunghoon; Liu, Edison T; Majumder, Partha P; Mandapati, Kiran Kumar; Marzuki, Sangkot; Mitchell, Wayne; Mukerji, Mitali; Naritomi, Kenji; Ngamphiw, Chumpol; Niikawa, Norio; Nishida, Nao; Oh, Bermseok; Oh, Sangho; Ohashi, Jun; Oka, Akira; Ong, Rick; Padilla, Carmencita D; Palittapongarnpim, Prasit; Perdigon, Henry B; Phipps, Maude Elvira; Png, Eileen; Sakaki, Yoshiyuki; Salvador, Jazelyn M; Sandraling, Yuliana; Scaria, Vinod; Seielstad, Mark; Sidek, Mohd Ros; Sinha, Amit; Srikummool, Metawee; Sudoyo, Herawati; Sugano, Sumio; Suryadi, Helena; Suzuki, Yoshiyuki; Tabbada, Kristina A; Tan, Adrian; Tokunaga, Katsushi; Tongsima, Sissades; Villamor, Lilian P; Wang, Eric; Wang, Ying; Wang, Haifeng; Wu, Jer-Yuarn; Xiao, Huasheng; Xu, Shuhua; Yang, Jin Ok; Shugart, Yin Yao; Yoo, Hyang-Sook; Yuan, Wentao; Zhao, Guoping; Zilfalil, Bin Alwi

    2009-12-11

    Asia harbors substantial cultural and linguistic diversity, but the geographic structure of genetic variation across the continent remains enigmatic. Here we report a large-scale survey of autosomal variation from a broad geographic sample of Asian human populations. Our results show that genetic ancestry is strongly correlated with linguistic affiliations as well as geography. Most populations show relatedness within ethnic/linguistic groups, despite prevalent gene flow among populations. More than 90% of East Asian (EA) haplotypes could be found in either Southeast Asian (SEA) or Central-South Asian (CSA) populations and show clinal structure with haplotype diversity decreasing from south to north. Furthermore, 50% of EA haplotypes were found in SEA only and 5% were found in CSA only, indicating that SEA was a major geographic source of EA populations.

  7. Community dissemination and genetic research: moving beyond results reporting.

    PubMed

    Trinidad, Susan Brown; Ludman, Evette J; Hopkins, Scarlett; James, Rosalina D; Hoeft, Theresa J; Kinegak, Annie; Lupie, Henry; Kinegak, Ralph; Boyer, Bert B; Burke, Wylie

    2015-07-01

    The community-based participatory research (CBPR) literature notes that researchers should share study results with communities. In the case of human genetic research, results may be scientifically interesting but lack clinical relevance. The goals of this study were to learn what kinds of information community members want to receive about genetic research and how such information should be conveyed. We conducted eight focus group discussions with Yup'ik Alaska Native people in southwest Alaska (N = 60) and 6 (N = 61) with members of a large health maintenance organization in Seattle, Washington. Participants wanted to receive genetic information they "could do something about" and wanted clinically actionable information to be shared with their healthcare providers; they also wanted researchers to share knowledge about other topics of importance to the community. Although Alaska Native participants were generally less familiar with western scientific terms and less interested in web-based information sources, the main findings were the same in Alaska and Seattle: participants wished for ongoing dialogue, including opportunities for informal, small-group conversations, and receiving information that had local relevance. Effective community dissemination is more than a matter of presenting study results in lay language. Community members should be involved in both defining culturally appropriate communication strategies and in determining which information should be shared. Reframing dissemination as a two-way dialogue, rather than a one-way broadcast, supports the twin aims of advancing scientific knowledge and achieving community benefit. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Community Dissemination and Genetic Research: Moving Beyond Results Reporting

    PubMed Central

    Trinidad, Susan Brown; Ludman, Evette J.; Hopkins, Scarlett; James, Rosalina D.; Hoeft, Theresa J.; Kinegak, Annie; Lupie, Henry; Kinegak, Ralph; Boyer, Bert B.; Burke, Wylie

    2015-01-01

    The community-based participatory research (CBPR) literature notes that researchers should share study results with communities. In the case of human genetic research, results may be scientifically interesting but lack clinical relevance. The goals of this study were to learn what kinds of information community members want to receive about genetic research and how such information should be conveyed. We conducted 8 focus group discussions with Yup’ik Alaska Native people in southwest Alaska (N=60) and 6 (N=61) with members of a large health maintenance organization in Seattle, Washington. Participants wanted to receive genetic information they “could do something about” and wanted clinically actionable information to be shared with their healthcare providers; they also wanted researchers to share knowledge about other topics of importance to the community. Although Alaska Native participants were generally less familiar with western scientific terms and less interested in web-based information sources, the main findings were the same in Alaska and Seattle: participants wished for ongoing dialogue, including opportunities for informal, small-group conversations and receiving information that had local relevance. Effective community dissemination is more than a matter of presenting study results in lay language. Community members should be involved in both defining culturally appropriate communication strategies and in determining which information should be shared. Reframing dissemination as a two-way dialogue, rather than a one-way broadcast, supports the twin aims of advancing scientific knowledge and achieving community benefit. PMID:25900516

  9. Parents' Perspectives on Participating in Genetic Research in Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trottier, Magan; Roberts, Wendy; Drmic, Irene; Scherer, Stephen W.; Weksberg, Rosanna; Cytrynbaum, Cheryl; Chitayat, David; Shuman, Cheryl; Miller, Fiona A.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic research in autism depends on the willingness of individuals with autism to participate; thus, there is a duty to assess participants' needs in the research process. We report on families' motives and expectations related to their participation in autism genetic research. Respondents valued having a genetic result, as it alleviates guilt,…

  10. Parents' Perspectives on Participating in Genetic Research in Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trottier, Magan; Roberts, Wendy; Drmic, Irene; Scherer, Stephen W.; Weksberg, Rosanna; Cytrynbaum, Cheryl; Chitayat, David; Shuman, Cheryl; Miller, Fiona A.

    2013-01-01

    Genetic research in autism depends on the willingness of individuals with autism to participate; thus, there is a duty to assess participants' needs in the research process. We report on families' motives and expectations related to their participation in autism genetic research. Respondents valued having a genetic result, as it alleviates guilt,…

  11. Human Genetic Marker for Resistance to Radiations and Chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Lieberman, Howard B.

    1999-06-01

    The major goal of the research project is to define the role of HRAD9 in the response of cells to radiation or chemical exposure, and to establish this gene as a genetic marker to predict predisposition to the deleterious health effects that may result after exposure to these agents. HRAD9 is a human homologue of fission yeast S. pombe rad9, a gene known to promote radioresistance and chemoresistance, and to regulate cell cycle progression after DNA is damaged or DNA replication is incomplete -i.e., it mediates cell cycle checkpoint control. Therefore, HRAD9 likely plays an important role in humans to determine the biological consequences of DNA damage.

  12. Human embryo research in France.

    PubMed

    Viville, Stéphane; Ménézo, Yves

    2002-02-01

    The French law on bioethics, voted upon in July 1994, is going to be revised. This is the occasion for France to reconsider its position concerning research on human embryos, which is currently prohibited in France, as it is in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. However, such research is authorised in other European countries such as the UK, Spain, Belgium, Italy and The Netherlands. The establishment of human embryonic stem (ES) cells has reopened the debate in France because of their potential in human therapy. Indeed, ES cells, derived from early embryos (5-6 days old), preserve in vitro a pluripotent character, and they could provide an infinite source of different tissues that could be used in replacement therapy. This consists of ES cells differentiated in vitro into the desired tissues or cell types and grafted into the patient. The use of human ES cells in replacement therapy raises the major problem of graft rejection. One of the proposed solutions would be to carry out a 'therapeutic cloning' and to derive ES cells from the embryos obtained in this way. We do consider that, for the moment, the interest of the cloning study lies mainly in the understanding of the mechanisms responsible for reprogramming the nuclei. This research can be performed first on animal models. France is now thinking to allow human embryo research. We present here the French law proposed on human embryo research. French government is proposing to allow research exclusively on frozen supernumerary embryos, which no longer have any parental or adoption potential. Creation of human embryos for research purposes will still be prohibited. However, allowance of studies on human cloning in order to realise therapeutic cloning is mentioned in the proposal. We think that allowing research in humans on therapeutic cloning is premature and contradicts the prohibition of the creation of human embryos for research.

  13. Using genetically engineered mice for radiation research.

    PubMed

    Kirsch, David G

    2011-09-01

    The laboratory mouse has been used for many decades as a model system for radiation research. Recent advances in genetic engineering now allow scientists to delete genes in specific cell types at different stages of development. The ability to manipulate genes in the mouse with spatial and temporal control opens new opportunities to investigate the role of genes in regulating the response of normal tissues and tumors to radiation. Currently, we are using the Cre-loxP system to delete genes, such as p53, in a cell-type specific manner in mice to study mechanisms of acute radiation injury and late effects of radiation. Our results demonstrate that p53 is required in the gastrointestinal (GI) epithelium to prevent radiation-induced GI syndrome and in endothelial and/or hematopoietic cells to prevent late effects of radiation. We have also used these genetic tools to generate primary tumors in mice to study tumor response to radiation therapy. These advances in genetic engineering provide a powerful model system to dissect both the mechanisms of normal tissue injury after irradiation and the mechanisms by which radiation cures cancer.

  14. Genetics of multifactorial disorders: proceedings of the 6th Pan Arab Human Genetics Conference.

    PubMed

    Nair, Pratibha; Bizzari, Sami; Rajah, Nirmal; Assaf, Nada; Al-Ali, Mahmoud Taleb; Hamzeh, Abdul Rezzak

    2016-04-20

    The 6th Pan Arab Human Genetics Conference (PAHGC), "Genetics of Multifactorial Disorders" was organized by the Center for Arab Genomic Studies (http://www.cags.org.ae) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates from 21 to 23 January, 2016. The PAHGCs are held biennially to provide a common platform to bring together regional and international geneticists to share their knowledge and to discuss common issues. Over 800 delegates attended the first 2 days of the conference and these came from various medical and scientific backgrounds. They consisted of geneticists, molecular biologists, medical practitioners, postdoctoral researchers, technical staff (e.g., nurses and lab technicians) and medical students from 35 countries around the world. On the 3rd day, a one-day workshop on "Genetic Counseling" was delivered to 26 participants. The conference focused on four major topics, namely, diabetes, genetics of neurodevelopmental disorders, congenital anomalies and cancer genetics. Personalized medicine was a recurrent theme in most of the research presented at the conference, as was the application of novel molecular findings in clinical settings. This report discusses a summary of the presentations from the meeting.

  15. Human factors in visualization research.

    PubMed

    Tory, Melanie; Möller, Torsten

    2004-01-01

    Visualization can provide valuable assistance for data analysis and decision making tasks. However, how people perceive and interact with a visualization tool can strongly influence their understanding of the data as well as the system's usefulness. Human factors therefore contribute significantly to the visualization process and should play an important role in the design and evaluation of visualization tools. Several research initiatives have begun to explore human factors in visualization, particularly in perception-based design. Nonetheless, visualization work involving human factors is in its infancy, and many potentially promising areas have yet to be explored. Therefore, this paper aims to 1) review known methodology for doing human factors research, with specific emphasis on visualization, 2) review current human factors research in visualization to provide a basis for future investigation, and 3) identify promising areas for future research.

  16. Social and Psychological Aspects of Applied Human Genetics: A Bibliography.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sorenson, James R., Comp.

    This bibliography is a selective compilation of books and articles which focus on the psychological and social issues of applied human genetics. It is centered in particular around problems, issues, and discussions of genetic counseling, the primary mechanism by which human genetics has been applied to date. It includes those entries which, on the…

  17. Prospects for genetically modified non-human primate models, including the common marmoset.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Erika

    2015-04-01

    Genetically modified mice have contributed much to studies in the life sciences. In some research fields, however, mouse models are insufficient for analyzing the molecular mechanisms of pathology or as disease models. Often, genetically modified non-human primate (NHP) models are desired, as they are more similar to human physiology, morphology, and anatomy. Recent progress in studies of the reproductive biology in NHPs has enabled the introduction of exogenous genes into NHP genomes or the alteration of endogenous NHP genes. This review summarizes recent progress in the production of genetically modified NHPs, including the common marmoset, and future perspectives for realizing genetically modified NHP models for use in life sciences research.

  18. Clinical genetic research 3: Genetics ELSI (Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues) research.

    PubMed

    Pullman, Daryl; Etchegary, Holly

    2015-01-01

    ELSI (Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues) is a widely used acronym in the bioethics literature that encompasses a broad range of research areas involved in examining the various impacts of science and technology on society. In Canada, GE3LS (Genetics, Ethical, Economic, Environmental, Legal, Social issues) is the term used to describe ELSI studies. It is intentionally more expansive in that GE3LS explicitly brings economic and environmental issues under its purview. ELSI/GE3LS research has become increasingly important in recent years as there has been a greater emphasis on "translational research" that moves genomics from the bench to the clinic. The purpose of this chapter is to outline a range of ELSI-related work that might be conducted as part of a large scale genetics or genomics research project, and to provide some practical insights on how a scientific research team might incorporate a strong and effective ELSI program within its broader research mandate. We begin by describing the historical context of ELSI research and the development of GE3LS research in the Canadian context. We then illustrate how some ELSI research might unfold by outlining a variety of research questions and the various methodologies that might be employed in addressing them in an area of ELSI research that is encompassed under the term "public engagement." We conclude with some practical pointers about how to build an effective ELSI/GE3LS team and focus within a broader scientific research program.

  19. Astonishing advances in mouse genetic tools for biomedical research.

    PubMed

    Kaczmarczyk, Lech; Jackson, Walker S

    2015-01-01

    The humble house mouse has long been a workhorse model system in biomedical research. The technology for introducing site-specific genome modifications led to Nobel Prizes for its pioneers and opened a new era of mouse genetics. However, this technology was very time-consuming and technically demanding. As a result, many investigators continued to employ easier genome manipulation methods, though resulting models can suffer from overlooked or underestimated consequences. Another breakthrough, invaluable for the molecular dissection of disease mechanisms, was the invention of high-throughput methods to measure the expression of a plethora of genes in parallel. However, the use of samples containing material from multiple cell types could obfuscate data, and thus interpretations. In this review we highlight some important issues in experimental approaches using mouse models for biomedical research. We then discuss recent technological advances in mouse genetics that are revolutionising human disease research. Mouse genomes are now easily manipulated at precise locations thanks to guided endonucleases, such as transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) or the CRISPR/Cas9 system, both also having the potential to turn the dream of human gene therapy into reality. Newly developed methods of cell type-specific isolation of transcriptomes from crude tissue homogenates, followed by detection with next generation sequencing (NGS), are vastly improving gene regulation studies. Taken together, these amazing tools simplify the creation of much more accurate mouse models of human disease, and enable the extraction of hitherto unobtainable data.

  20. Human Papillomaviruses: Genetic Basis of Carcinogenicity

    PubMed Central

    Burk, Robert D.; Chen, Zigui; Van Doorslaer, Koenraad

    2009-01-01

    Persistent infection by specific oncogenic human papillomaviruses (HPVs) is established as the necessary cause of cervix cancer. DNA sequence differences between HPV genomes determine whether an HPV has the potential to cause cancer. Of the more than 100 HPV genotypes characterized at the genetic level, at least 15 are associated, to varying degrees, with cervical cancer. Classification based on nucleotide similarity places nearly all HPVs that infect the cervicovaginal area within the α-PV genus. Within this genus, phylogenetic trees inferred from the entire viral genome cluster all cancer-causing types together, suggesting the existence of a common ancestor for the oncogenic HPVs. However, in separate trees built from the early open reading frames (ORFs; i.e. E1, E2, E6, E7) or the late ORFs (i.e. L1, L2), the carcinogenic potential sorts with the early region of the genome, but not the late region. Thus, genetic differences within the early region specify the pathogenic potential of α-HPV infections. Since the HPV genomes are monophyletic and sites are highly correlated across the genome, diagnosis of oncogenic types and non-oncogenic types can be accomplished using any region across the genome. Here we review our current understanding of the evolutionary history of the oncogenic HPVs, in particular, we focus on the importance of viral genome heterogeneity and discuss the genetic basis for the oncogenic phenotype in some but not all α-PVs. PMID:19684441

  1. Molecular genetics of speciation and human origins.

    PubMed Central

    Ayala, F J; Escalante, A; O'Huigin, C; Klein, J

    1994-01-01

    The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) plays a cardinal role in the defense of vertebrates against parasites and other pathogens. In some genes there are extensive and ancient polymorphisms that have passed from ancestral to descendant species and are shared among contemporary species. The polymorphism at the DRB1 locus, represented by 58 known alleles in humans, has existed for at least 30 million years and is shared by humans, apes, and other primates. The coalescence theory of populations genetics leads to the conclusion that the DRB1 polymorphism requires that the population ancestral to modern humans has maintained a mean effective size of 100,000 individuals over the 30-million-year persistence of this polymorphism. We explore the possibility of occasional population bottlenecks and conclude that the ancestral population could not have at any time consisted of fewer than several thousand individuals. The MHC polymorphisms exclude the theory claiming, on the basis of mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms, that a constriction down to one or few women occurred in Africa, at the transition from archaic to anatomically modern humans, some 200,000 years ago. The data are consistent with, but do not provide specific support for, the claim that human populations throughout the World were at that time replaced by populations migrating from Africa. The MHC and other molecular polymorphisms are consistent with a "multiregional" theory of Pleistocene human evolution that proposes regional continuity of human populations since the time of migrations of Homo erectus to the present, with distinctive regional selective pressures and occasional migrations between populations. PMID:8041698

  2. Genetics of human sensitivity to ultraviolet radiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cleaver, James E.

    1994-07-01

    the major human health effects of solar and artificial UV light occur from the UVB and UVC wavelength ranges and involve a variety of short-term and long-term deleterious changes to the skin and eyes. the more important initial damage to cellular macromolecules involves dimerization of adjacent pyrimidines in DNA to produce cyclobutane pyrimidine dimes, (6-4) pyrimidine- pyrimidone, and (6-4) dewar photoproducts. these photoproducts can be repaired by a genetically regulated enzyme system (nucleotide excision repair) which removes oligonucleotides 29-30 nucleotides long that contain the photoproducts, and synthesizes replacement patches. At least a dozen gene products are involved in the process of recognizing photoproducts in DNA, altering local DNA helicity and cleaving the polynucleotide chain at defined positions either side of a photoproduct. Hereditary mutations in many of these genes are recognized in the human genetic disorders xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), Cockayne syndrome (CS), and trichothiodystrophy (TTD). Several of the gene products have other functions involving the regulation of gene transcription which accounts for the complex clinical presentation of repair deficient diseases that involve sensitivity of the skin and eyes to UV light, increased solar carcinogenesis (in XP), demyelination, and ganglial calcification (in CS), hair abnormalities (in TTD), and developmental and neurological abnormalities

  3. Biological Databases for Human Research

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Dong; Ma, Lina; Yu, Jun; Zhang, Zhang

    2015-01-01

    The completion of the Human Genome Project lays a foundation for systematically studying the human genome from evolutionary history to precision medicine against diseases. With the explosive growth of biological data, there is an increasing number of biological databases that have been developed in aid of human-related research. Here we present a collection of human-related biological databases and provide a mini-review by classifying them into different categories according to their data types. As human-related databases continue to grow not only in count but also in volume, challenges are ahead in big data storage, processing, exchange and curation. PMID:25712261

  4. Genetics of the dentofacial variation in human malocclusion

    PubMed Central

    Moreno Uribe, L. M.; Miller, S. F.

    2015-01-01

    Malocclusions affect individuals worldwide, resulting in compromised function and esthetics. Understanding the etiological factors contributing to the variation in dentofacial morphology associated with malocclusions is the key to develop novel treatment approaches. Advances in dentofacial phenotyping, which is the comprehensive characterization of hard and soft tissue variation in the craniofacial complex, together with the acquisition of large-scale genomic data have started to unravel genetic mechanisms underlying facial variation. Knowledge on the genetics of human malocclusion is limited even though results attained thus far are encouraging, with promising opportunities for future research. This review summarizes the most common dentofacial variations associated with malocclusions and reviews the current knowledge of the roles of genes in the development of malocclusions. Lastly, this review will describe ways to advance malocclusion research, following examples from the expanding fields of phenomics and genomic medicine, which aim to better patient outcomes. PMID:25865537

  5. Genetics of the dentofacial variation in human malocclusion.

    PubMed

    Moreno Uribe, L M; Miller, S F

    2015-04-01

    Malocclusions affect individuals worldwide, resulting in compromised function and esthetics. Understanding the etiological factors contributing to the variation in dentofacial morphology associated with malocclusions is the key to develop novel treatment approaches. Advances in dentofacial phenotyping, which is the comprehensive characterization of hard and soft tissue variation in the craniofacial complex, together with the acquisition of large-scale genomic data have started to unravel genetic mechanisms underlying facial variation. Knowledge on the genetics of human malocclusion is limited even though results attained thus far are encouraging, with promising opportunities for future research. This review summarizes the most common dentofacial variations associated with malocclusions and reviews the current knowledge of the roles of genes in the development of malocclusions. Lastly, this review will describe ways to advance malocclusion research, following examples from the expanding fields of phenomics and genomic medicine, which aim to better patient outcomes.

  6. The ethics of characterizing difference: guiding principles on using racial categories in human genetics.

    PubMed

    Lee, Sandra Soo-Jin; Mountain, Joanna; Koenig, Barbara; Altman, Russ; Brown, Melissa; Camarillo, Albert; Cavalli-Sforza, Luca; Cho, Mildred; Eberhardt, Jennifer; Feldman, Marcus; Ford, Richard; Greely, Henry; King, Roy; Markus, Hazel; Satz, Debra; Snipp, Matthew; Steele, Claude; Underhill, Peter

    2008-01-01

    We are a multidisciplinary group of Stanford faculty who propose ten principles to guide the use of racial and ethnic categories when characterizing group differences in research into human genetic variation.

  7. The ethics of characterizing difference: guiding principles on using racial categories in human genetics

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Sandra Soo-Jin; Mountain, Joanna; Koenig, Barbara; Altman, Russ; Brown, Melissa; Camarillo, Albert; Cavalli-Sforza, Luca; Cho, Mildred; Eberhardt, Jennifer; Feldman, Marcus; Ford, Richard; Greely, Henry; King, Roy; Markus, Hazel; Satz, Debra; Snipp, Matthew; Steele, Claude; Underhill, Peter

    2008-01-01

    We are a multidisciplinary group of Stanford faculty who propose ten principles to guide the use of racial and ethnic categories when characterizing group differences in research into human genetic variation. PMID:18638359

  8. Human Research Program Requirements Document

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rieger, Gabe

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this document is to define, document, and allocate the Human Research Program (HRP) requirements to the HRP Program elements. It establishes the flow-down of requirements from Exploration Systems Mission Directorate (ESMD) and Office of the Chief Health and Medical Officer (OCHMO) to the various Program Elements of the HRP to ensure that human research and technology countermeasure investments are made to insure the delivery of countermeasures and technologies that satisfy ESMD s and OCHMO's exploration mission requirements.

  9. Human Research Initiative (HRI)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Motil, Brian

    2003-01-01

    A code U initiative starting in the FY04 budget includes specific funding for 'Phase Change' and 'Multiphase Flow Research' on the ISS. NASA GRC developed a concept for two facilities based on funding/schedule constraints: 1) Two Phase Flow Facility (TphiFFy) which assumes integrating into FIR; 2) Contact Line Dynamics Experiment Facility (CLiDE) which assumes integration into MSG. Each facility will accommodate multiple experiments conducted by NRA selected PIs with an overall goal of enabling specific NASA strategic objectives. There may also be a significant ground-based component.

  10. Genetic loading on human loving styles.

    PubMed

    Emanuele, Enzo; Brondino, Natascia; Pesenti, Sara; Re, Simona; Geroldi, Diego

    2007-12-01

    It has been hypothesized that cerebral neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin could play a role in human romantic bonding. However, no data on the genetic basis of human romantic love are currently available. To address this issue, we looked for associations between markers in neurotransmitter genes (the serotonin transporter gene, 5-HTT; the serotonin receptor 2A, 5HT2A; the dopamine D2 receptor gene, DRD2; and the dopamine D4 receptor gene, DRD4) and the six styles of love as conceptualized by Lee (Eros, Ludus, Storge, Pragma, Mania and Agape). A total of 350 healthy young adults (165 males and 185 females, mean age: 24.1+/-3.9 years, range 18-32 years) filled the 24-item Love Attitudes Scale (LAS) and were genotyped for the following six polymorphic markers: the serotonin transporter-linked polymorphic region (5-HTTLPR), the 5HT2A T102C and C516T polymorphisms, the DRD2 TaqI A and TaqI B variants, and the DRD4 exon 3 VNTR polymorphism. Statistical analysis revealed a significant association between the DRD2 TaqI A genotypes and "Eros" (a loving style characterized by a tendency to develop intense emotional experiences based on the physical attraction to the partner), as well as between the C516T 5HT2A polymorphism and "Mania" (a possessive and dependent romantic attachment, characterized by self-defeating emotions). These associations were present in both sexes and remained significant even after adjustment for potential confounders. Our data provide the first evidence of a possible genetic loading on human loving styles.

  11. Overview of genetic analysis of human opioid receptors.

    PubMed

    Spampinato, Santi M

    2015-01-01

    The human μ-opioid receptor gene (OPRM1), due to its genetic and structural variation, has been a target of interest in several pharmacogenetic studies. The μ-opioid receptor (MOR), encoded by OPRM1, contributes to regulate the analgesic response to pain and also controls the rewarding effects of many drugs of abuse, including opioids, nicotine, and alcohol. Genetic polymorphisms of opioid receptors are candidates for the variability of clinical opioid effects. The non-synonymous polymorphism A118G of the OPRM1 has been repeatedly associated with the efficacy of opioid treatments for pain and various types of dependence. Genetic analysis of human opioid receptors has evidenced the presence of numerous polymorphisms either in exonic or in intronic sequences as well as the presence of synonymous coding variants that may have important effects on transcription, mRNA stability, and splicing, thus affecting gene function despite not directly disrupting any specific residue. Genotyping of opioid receptors is still in its infancy and a relevant progress in this field can be achieved by using advanced gene sequencing techniques described in this review that allow the researchers to obtain vast quantities of data on human genomes and transcriptomes in a brief period of time and with affordable costs.

  12. Genetic control of glycolysis in human erythrocytes

    SciTech Connect

    Gilroy, T.E.; Brewer, G.J.; Sing, C.F.

    1980-03-01

    We have studied heritability of the concentration of each glycolytic intermediate and adenine nucleotide in the cytosol of human erythrocytes obtained from a random sample of apparently healthy young individuals. Preliminary to analysis of heritability, each trait was statistically described and the effects attributable to variation in measured concomitants were removed by regression. Heritability was estimated using the family-set method. This method removes covariances between the index case, sibling and first cousin, due to those environmental determinants of the phenotypic values that are shared with a matched, unrelated control member of the family set. It also removes covariances due to environments that are shared by siblings and first cousins. Heritability was estimated by employing the fact that the variance of differences between first cousins minus the variance of differences between full siblings estimates three-fourths of the additive genetic variance. The heritability estimates for G6P, F6P, ATP and some other metabolite concentrations are high and significantly greater than zero. The heritabilities of G6P and F6P are likely attributable to genetic variation in the in vivo activity of HK and/or PFK, because the concentrations of these metabolites are tightly controlled by the two regulatory enzymes. Statistically significant heritability estimates for HK and PFK mass action ratios stronglysuggest genes are responsible for a portion of the quantitative variation in these enzyme activities. Since HK and PFK regulate glycolysis and the production of ATP, genetic variation in their activities might be causally related to the heritability of ATP concentration.

  13. Mouse Genetic Models of Human Brain Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Celeste; Jia, Zhengping

    2016-01-01

    Over the past three decades, genetic manipulations in mice have been used in neuroscience as a major approach to investigate the in vivo function of genes and their alterations. In particular, gene targeting techniques using embryonic stem cells have revolutionized the field of mammalian genetics and have been at the forefront in the generation of numerous mouse models of human brain disorders. In this review, we will first examine childhood developmental disorders such as autism, intellectual disability, Fragile X syndrome, and Williams-Beuren syndrome. We will then explore psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and lastly, neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. We will outline the creation of these mouse models that range from single gene deletions, subtle point mutations to multi-gene manipulations, and discuss the key behavioral phenotypes of these mice. Ultimately, the analysis of the models outlined in this review will enhance our understanding of the in vivo role and underlying mechanisms of disease-related genes in both normal brain function and brain disorders, and provide potential therapeutic targets and strategies to prevent and treat these diseases. PMID:27047540

  14. Darkness in El Dorado: human genetics on trial.

    PubMed

    Morton, N E

    2001-04-01

    A recent book by a freelance journalist makes major accusations against genetic studies by J. V. Neel in the Amazon a generation ago. Contrary to these charges, there was no connection of Neel's work with human experiments conducted by the Rochester Manhattan project twenty years earlier, nor did the studies serve as a control for survivors of the atomic bombs in Japan. Neel was not a eugenicist. His program of measles vaccination reduced mortality, and was not in any sense an experiment. Given the passage of time and lack of supporting evidence, further investigation of these charges is pointless. However, the political climate in which human populations are studied has changed dramatically over the last generation. Unless guidelines reflect an international consensus, the benefits of population studies to human welfare and science will be jeopardized. The World Health Organization guidelines should be extended to cover current research.

  15. The New World of Human Genetics: A dialogue between Practitioners & the General Public on Ethical, Legal & Social Implications of the Human Genome Project

    SciTech Connect

    Schofield, Amy

    2014-12-08

    The history and reasons for launching the Human Genome project and the current uses of genetic human material; Identifying and discussing the major issues stemming directly from genetic research and therapy-including genetic discrimination, medical/ person privacy, allocation of government resources and individual finances, and the effect on the way in which we perceive the value of human life; Discussing the sometimes hidden ethical, social and legislative implications of genetic research and therapy such as informed consent, screening and preservation of genetic materials, efficacy of medical procedures, the role of the government, and equal access to medical coverage.

  16. Embracing an "African Ethos" to facilitate African immigrants participation in medical genetics and genomics research.

    PubMed

    Buseh, Aaron G; Stevens, Patricia E; Millon-Underwood, Sandra; Kelber, Sheryl T; Townsend, Leolia

    Limited published research exists on perceptions and potentials for black African immigrants' participation in medical genetics and genomics research. This study explores the inclination and disinclination of African immigrants to be involved in genetics and genomics research. In-depth qualitative interviews were employed in which a sample of black African immigrants 18 years and older (n = 34) were interviewed. Barriers included contrary beliefs and customs about disease and the human body that differs from Western conceptions, and lack of genuine connection to the health care system. Facilitators included promotion of an "African ethos," wherein Africans unite with one another in a communal extension of self and robust community involvement across the life span of genetic studies. It is important for researchers and genetic counselors to understand the sociocultural underpinnings of African immigrants about genetics and genomics research as an initial step to encouraging their participation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Genetic engineering of human embryonic stem cells with lentiviral vectors.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Chen; Tang, Dong-Qi; Xie, Chang-Qing; Zhang, Li; Xu, Ke-Feng; Thompson, Winston E; Chou, Wayne; Gibbons, Gary H; Chang, Lung-Ji; Yang, Li-Jun; Chen, Yuqing E

    2005-08-01

    Human embryonic stem (hES) cells present a valuable source of cells with a vast therapeutic potential. However, the low efficiency of directed differentiation of hES cells remains a major obstacle in their uses for regenerative medicine. While differentiation may be controlled by the genetic manipulation, effective and efficient gene transfer into hES cells has been an elusive goal. Here, we show stable and efficient genetic manipulations of hES cells using lentiviral vectors. This method resulted in the establishment of stable gene expression without loss of pluripotency in hES cells. In addition, lentiviral vectors were effective in conveying the expression of an U6 promoter-driven small interfering RNA (siRNA), which was effective in silencing its specific target. Taken together, our results suggest that lentiviral gene delivery holds great promise for hES cell research and application.

  18. Breeding and quantitative genetics advances in sunflower Sclerotinia research

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Genetic research of the sunflower research unit, USDA-ARS, in Fargo, ND, was discussed in a presentation to a group of producers, industry representatives, and scientists. The need for sunflower quantitative genetics research to find and capture Sclerotinia resistance is increasing with every year t...

  19. Research Progress and Results from the 2009 Sunflower Genetics Trials

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Genetic research of the sunflower research unit, USDA-ARS, in Fargo, ND, was discussed in a presentation to a group of producers, industry representatives, and scientists. The need for sunflower genetic research is ever increasing with more insect and disease problems nationwide. Preliminary data on...

  20. Scaling up: human genetics as a Cold War network.

    PubMed

    Lindee, Susan

    2014-09-01

    In this commentary I explore how the papers here illuminate the processes of collection that have been so central to the history of human genetics since 1945. The development of human population genetics in the Cold War period produced databases and biobanks that have endured into the present, and that continue to be used and debated. In the decades after the bomb, scientists collected and transferred human biological materials and information from populations of interest, and as they moved these biological resources or biosocial resources acquired new meanings and uses. The papers here collate these practices and map their desires and ironies. They explore how a large international network of geneticists, biological anthropologists, virologists and other physicians and scientists interacted with local informants, research subjects and public officials. They also track the networks and standards that mobilized the transfer of information, genealogies, tissue and blood samples. As Joanna Radin suggests here, the massive collections of human biological materials and data were often understood to be resources for an "as-yet-unknown" future. The stories told here contain elements of surveillance, extraction, salvage and eschatology.

  1. Genetically modified plants and human health

    PubMed Central

    Key, Suzie; Ma, Julian K-C; Drake, Pascal MW

    2008-01-01

    Summary Genetically modified (or GM) plants have attracted a large amount of media attention in recent years and continue to do so. Despite this, the general public remains largely unaware of what a GM plant actually is or what advantages and disadvantages the technology has to offer, particularly with regard to the range of applications for which they can be used. From the first generation of GM crops, two main areas of concern have emerged, namely risk to the environment and risk to human health. As GM plants are gradually being introduced into the European Union there is likely to be increasing public concern regarding potential health issues. Although it is now commonplace for the press to adopt ‘health campaigns’, the information they publish is often unreliable and unrepresentative of the available scientific evidence. We consider it important that the medical profession should be aware of the state of the art, and, as they are often the first port of call for a concerned patient, be in a position to provide an informed opinion. This review will examine how GM plants may impact on human health both directly – through applications targeted at nutrition and enhancement of recombinant medicine production – but also indirectly, through potential effects on the environment. Finally, it will examine the most important opposition currently facing the worldwide adoption of this technology: public opinion. PMID:18515776

  2. Drawing the line on genetic intervention in humans.

    PubMed Central

    Kaura, D R

    1996-01-01

    Because the science of genetics can have such profound effects on medicine and mankind, society must define the characteristics of a moral framework within which to make decisions about genetic issues. University of Manitoba medical student Deepak Kaura, who claimed third prize in CMAJ's 1995 Logie Medical Ethics Essay Contest, examines the ethics of genetic intervention in humans. Images p928-a PMID:8634976

  3. Human Genetics Education in the High School: A Pilot Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haddow, Paula K.

    1982-01-01

    Describes and evaluates a two-day workshop on human genetics for high school biology teachers which involved: (1) a series of lectures by professionals in medical genetics, ethics, and genetic counseling; (2) demonstrations; (3) question-and-answer sessions; (4) a curriculum packet; and (5) a follow-up bimonthly newsletter. (DC)

  4. Genetic and Fossil Evidence for the Origin of Modern Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stringer, C. B.; Andrews, P.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses how genetic data on present human population relationships and data from the Pleistocene fossil hominid record are being used to compare two contrasting models for the origin of modern humans. (TW)

  5. Genetic and Fossil Evidence for the Origin of Modern Humans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stringer, C. B.; Andrews, P.

    1988-01-01

    Discusses how genetic data on present human population relationships and data from the Pleistocene fossil hominid record are being used to compare two contrasting models for the origin of modern humans. (TW)

  6. Research with vulnerable human beings.

    PubMed

    Tangwa, Godfrey B

    2009-11-01

    Some categories of human beings are particularly vulnerable vis-à-vis medical research. Vulnerability could be considered as the liability to be harmed, exploited, deceived, cheated, wronged, or otherwise unfairly treated, in roughly that descending order of importance. Vulnerable human beings obviously include the incompetent (minors and mentally handicapped adults), the desperately poor, ill or ignorant, prisoners, refugees, pregnant women, subordinates in highly authoritarian systems, etc. Vulnerability in itself does not imply that no research whatsoever should be carried out with such categories of humans but only that it should be carried out only under very special conditions. In this paper I treat of vulnerability in research of particularly developing world populations; of the types of research which exploit such vulnerability, and of why and how research subjects should be protected. The aim in this paper is to stimulate practical reflection on the possible vulnerabilities of potential research subjects that researchers or investigators need to avoid exploiting rather than on an adequate theoretical treatment of the issue.

  7. Protecting human subjects in research.

    PubMed

    Orticio, Lily P

    2009-01-01

    The quest for advancing scientific knowledge through human experimentations using vulnerable groups is traced back to ancient history, when Herophilus performed vivisections on prisoners. The violation of the rights of human subjects through the 20th century led to the formulation of the Nuremberg Code in 1947 and the Declaration of Helsinki in 1964. In the United States, the most infamous was the Tuskegee public health study that resulted in the enactment of the National Research Act that authorized the creation of the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects in Biomedical and Behavioral Research in 1974. In spite of existing federal regulations, the system of protecting human subjects is still flawed. Transparency of conflict ofinterest, clarity, and strict adherence to institutional guidelines are critical in safeguarding the rights and safety of human subjects and the integrity of research. Education on ethics and emerging complex ethical issues, global awareness, and governmental cooperation and sanctions are important steps in addressing the inadequacies in protecting the most vulnerable populations in experimentations worldwide. Investigators must always remember that the primary safeguards of protecting human life rest in their hands.

  8. Ethical issues in international collaborative research on the human genome: The HGP and the HGDP

    SciTech Connect

    Knoppers, B.M.; Hirtle, M.; Lormeau, S.

    1996-06-01

    This special feature describes the ethical issues in international collaborative research on the human genome, both regarding the Human Genome Project (HGP), which is concerned with genetic mapping, and the Human Genome Diversity Project (HGDP), which is an effort to document the genetic variation of the human species worldwide. 88 refs.

  9. Parents' attitudes toward genetic research in autism spectrum disorder.

    PubMed

    Johannessen, Jarle; Nærland, Terje; Bloss, Cinnamon; Rietschel, Marcella; Strohmaier, Jana; Gjevik, Elen; Heiberg, Arvid; Djurovic, Srdjan; Andreassen, Ole A

    2016-04-01

    Genetic research in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is mainly performed in minors who are legally unable to provide consent. Thus, knowledge of the attitudes, fears, and expectations toward genetic research of the parents is important. Knowledge of the attitudes toward genetic research will improve cooperation between researchers and participants, and help establish confidence in ASD genetic research. The present study aimed to assess these attitudes. Questionnaire-based assessments of attitudes toward genetic research and toward procedures in genetic research of n=1455 parents of individuals with ASD were performed. The main motivation for participation in genetic research is to gain more knowledge of the causes and disease mechanisms of ASD (83.6%), and to contribute toward development of improved treatment in the future (63.7%). The parents also had a positive attitude towards storing genetic information (54.3%) and they requested confidentiality of data (82.9%) and expressed a need to be informed about the purpose (89%) and progress of the research (83.7%). We found a slightly more positive attitude to participation in genetic research among older parents (P=0.015), among fathers compared with mothers (P=0.01), among parents of girls compared with boys (P=0.03), and infantile autism compared with Asperger syndrome (P=0.002). However, linear regression analysis showed that parent and child characteristics seem to have too small an influence on attitudes toward genetic research to be of any relevance (R(2)=0.002-0.02). Parents of children with ASD have, in general, a very positive attitude toward genetic research. Data confidentiality is important, and they express a need for information on the purpose and progress of the research.

  10. The National Institute of Nursing Research Explores Opportunities in Genetics Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sigmon, Hilary D.; Grady, Patricia A.; Amende, Lynn M.

    1997-01-01

    Genetics offers many opportunities for nursing research. Nurse researchers can contribute in such areas as biological, environmental, and behavioral linkages; genetic determination of physiological responses; and translation of science findings into clinical interventions. (SK)

  11. Genetic research and testing in sport and exercise science: a review of the issues.

    PubMed

    Wackerhage, Henning; Miah, Andy; Harris, Roger C; Montgomery, Hugh E; Williams, Alun G

    2009-09-01

    This review is based on the BASES position stand on "Genetic Research and Testing in Sport and Exercise Science". Our aims are first to introduce the reader to research in sport and exercise genetics and then to highlight ethical problems arising from such research and its applications. Sport and exercise genetics research in the form of transgenic animal and human association studies has contributed significantly to our understanding of exercise physiology and there is potential for major new discoveries. Researchers starting out in this field will have to ensure an appropriate study design to avoid, for example, statistically underpowered studies. Ethical concerns arise more from the applications of genetic research than from the research itself, which is assessed by ethical committees. Possible applications of genetic research are genetic performance tests or genetic tests to screen, for example, for increased risk of sudden death during sport. The concerns are that genetic performance testing could be performed on embryos and could be used to select embryos for transplantation or abortion. Screening for risk of sudden death may reduce deaths during sporting events but those that receive a positive diagnosis may suffer severe psychological consequences. Equally, it will be almost impossible to keep a positive diagnosis confidential if the individual tested is an elite athlete.

  12. Genetic variation and human disease: Principles and evolutionary approaches

    SciTech Connect

    Weiss, K.M.

    1993-12-31

    The context of the book here reviewed is the evolution of human phenotypes, with an emphasis on those complex characteristics that produce the prevailing disorders of an adult population. This is achieved with a background of evolution and population genetics, with human diseases placed in the context of mutation rates, selection, genetic drift and evolutionary history.

  13. NCBI genetic resources supporting immunogenetic research.

    PubMed

    Feolo, M; Helmberg, W; Sherry, S; Maglott, D R

    2000-01-01

    The NCBI creates and maintains a set of integrated bibliographic, sequence, map, structure and other database resources to promote the efficient retrieval of information and the discovery of novel relationships. The connections made between elements of these resources permit researchers to start a search from a wide spectrum of entry points. These multiple dimensions of data can be roughly categorized by primary content as text or bibliographic (PubMed, PubMedCentral, OMIM, LocusLink), sequence (GenBank, Reference Sequence Project (RefSeq), dbSNP, MMDB), protein structure (MMDB) or map position (MapView). They can also becategorized by level of expert curation, which may range from validation of submissions from external groups (GenBank, PubMed, PubMedCentral,), to automatic computation (HomoloGene, UniGene), and to highly reviewed and corrected (LocusLink, MMDB, OMIM, RefSeq). Searches can be made by words (in an article title, key words, sequence annotation, database value, author) by sequence (BLAST or e-PCR against multiple sequence databases), or by map coordinates. By computing or curating bi-directional links between related objects, NCBI can represent content on the genetics, molecular biology, and clinical considerations of interest to immunogeneticists. There is also an emerging resource developed by the NCBI in collaboration with the IHWG devoted to the presentation of MHC data (dbMHC). How dbMHC will augment existing resources at the NCBI is described.

  14. Public preferences and the challenge to genetic research policy.

    PubMed

    Dresser, Rebecca

    2014-03-01

    Modern genetic research requires scientists to collect, store, and study DNA samples and health information from thousands of people. Longstanding policy allows researchers to use samples and information without a person's informed consent as long as the person's identity is protected. Under existing policy, researchers must neither disclose study results to interested research participants nor compensate people who contribute to genetic research. Research and ethics experts developed these policy approaches without input from the people whose contributions are essential to the genetic research enterprise. A growing body of evidence shows that many research participants and would-be participants disagree with the current policy approaches. For ethical and practical reasons, participants should have a greater role in determining how genetic research is conducted.

  15. Leveraging human genetics to guide drug target discovery.

    PubMed

    Stitziel, Nathan O; Kathiresan, Sekar

    2017-07-01

    Identifying appropriate molecular targets is a critical step in drug development. Despite many advantages, the traditional tools of observational epidemiology and cellular or animal models of disease can be misleading in identifying causal pathways likely to lead to successful therapeutics. Here, we review some favorable aspects of human genetics studies that have the potential to accelerate drug target discovery. These include using genetic studies to identify pathways relevant to human disease, leveraging human genetics to discern causal relationships between biomarkers and disease, and studying genetic variation in humans to predict the potential efficacy and safety of inhibitory compounds aimed at molecular targets. We present some examples taken from studies of plasma lipids and coronary artery disease to highlight how human genetics can accelerate therapeutics development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. 76 FR 17930 - National Human Genome Research Institute; Notice of Closed Meeting

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-31

    ... HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Human Genome Research Institute; Notice of Closed... privacy. Name of Committee: National Human Genome Research Institute Special Emphasis Panel; Genetic... Branch, National Human Genome Research Institute, 5635 Fishers Lane, Suite 4076, MSC 9306, Rockville, MD...

  17. Modeling the genetic basis for human sleep disorders in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Amanda A.H.; Syed, Sheyum; Sanyal, Subhabrata

    2013-01-01

    Sleep research in Drosophila is not only here to stay, but is making impressive strides towards helping us understand the biological basis for and the purpose of sleep—perhaps one of the most complex and enigmatic of behaviors. Thanks to over a decade of sleep-related studies in flies, more molecular methods are being applied than ever before towards understanding the genetic basis of sleep disorders. The advent of high-throughput technologies that can rapidly interrogate whole genomes, epigenomes and proteomes, has also revolutionized our ability to detect genetic variants that might be causal for a number of sleep disorders. In the coming years, mutational studies in model organisms such as Drosophila will need to be functionally connected to information being generated from these whole-genome approaches in humans. This will necessitate the development of appropriate methods for interpolating data and increased analytical power to synthesize useful network(s) of sleep regulatory pathways—including appropriate discriminatory and predictive capabilities. Ultimately, such networks will also need to be interpreted in the context of fundamental neurobiological substrates for sleep in any given species. In this review, we highlight some emerging approaches, such as network analysis and mathematical modeling of sleep distributions, which can be applied to contemporary sleep research as a first step to achieving these aims. These methodologies should favorably impact not only a mechanistic understanding of sleep, but also future pharmacological intervention strategies to manage and treat sleep disorders in humans. PMID:23802043

  18. Genetics/Genomics Research in the Central Region

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    2006-01-01

    Genetics-based research within the Biological Resources Discipline (BRD) Science Centers in the Central Region incorporates many aspects of the field of genetics. Research activities range from documenting patterns of genetic variation in order to investigate relationships among species, populations and individuals to investigating the structure, function and expression of genes and their response to environmental stressors. Research in the broad areas of genetics requires multidisciplinary expertise and specialized equipment and instrumentation. Brief summaries of the capabilities of the five BRD Centers are given below.

  19. Behavioral phenotypes in genetic syndromes: genetic clues to human behavior.

    PubMed

    Cassidy, Suzanne B; Morris, Colleen A

    2002-01-01

    A behavioral phenotype is the characteristic cognitive, personality, behavioral, and psychiatric pattern that typifies a disorder. A number of genetic syndromes have been identified as having this type of distinctive and consistent behavior pattern. It may act as an important diagnostic sign, like a malformation or characteristic facial appearance. Such patterns are also useful for the physician's anticipatory guidance from an educational, rehabilitative, and parenting perspective. In addition, because they are the consequences of known genetic alterations, behavioral phenotypes can be potentially highly valuable clues to the identification of genes in the population that are important to determination of cognitive skills or deficits, personality determinants, behavioral abnormalities, or psychiatric disorders. The nature of a behavioral phenotype and its potential for genetic insight can be appreciated through the examples of Williams syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, and Angelman syndrome. The cognitive and behavioral characteristics of these disorders are distinctive. Williams syndrome is known for its association with remarkable conversational verbal abilities and excessive empathy, whereas Prader-Willi syndrome is known for temper tantrums and obsessive-compulsive features, and Angelman syndrome is associated with a constantly happy affect and hyperactivity. The genetic basis for each of these disorders is known, and the pathophysiology and genotype-phenotype correlations are beginning to provide insight into genes responsible for personality characteristics and behavioral abnormalities.

  20. Forest genetic research at the Institute of Paper Chemistry

    Treesearch

    Dean W. Einspahr

    1970-01-01

    Forest genetics research is carried on in the Genetics and Physiology Group at The Institute of Paper Chemistry. The Institute is located in Appleton, Wisconsin, and has a staff of approximately 300 people. It is a nonprofit research and educational institution that was started in 1929 and is affiliated with Lawrence University. The Institute is a graduate school...

  1. Genetic Engineering of Plants. Agricultural Research Opportunities and Policy Concerns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, Leslie

    Plant scientists and science policymakers from government, private companies, and universities met at a convocation on the genetic engineering of plants. During the convocation, researchers described some of the ways genetic engineering may be used to address agricultural problems. Policymakers delineated and debated changes in research funding…

  2. Genetic Engineering of Plants. Agricultural Research Opportunities and Policy Concerns.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, Leslie

    Plant scientists and science policymakers from government, private companies, and universities met at a convocation on the genetic engineering of plants. During the convocation, researchers described some of the ways genetic engineering may be used to address agricultural problems. Policymakers delineated and debated changes in research funding…

  3. Inferences of Recent and Ancient Human Population History Using Genetic and Non-Genetic Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kitchen, Andrew

    2008-01-01

    I have adopted complementary approaches to inferring human demographic history utilizing human and non-human genetic data as well as cultural data. These complementary approaches form an interdisciplinary perspective that allows one to make inferences of human history at varying timescales, from the events that occurred tens of thousands of years…

  4. Inferences of Recent and Ancient Human Population History Using Genetic and Non-Genetic Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kitchen, Andrew

    2008-01-01

    I have adopted complementary approaches to inferring human demographic history utilizing human and non-human genetic data as well as cultural data. These complementary approaches form an interdisciplinary perspective that allows one to make inferences of human history at varying timescales, from the events that occurred tens of thousands of years…

  5. Lunar Human Research Requirements (LHRR)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Denkins, Pamela

    2009-01-01

    Biomedical research will be conducted during transit and on the surface of the Moon to prepare for extended stays on the Moon and to prepare for the exploration of Mars. The objective of the Human Research Program (HRP) is to preserve the health and enhance performance of astronaut explorers. Specific objectives of the HRP include developing the knowledge, capabilities, and necessary countermeasures and technologies in support of human space exploration; focusing on mitigating the highest risks to crew health and performance; and defining and improving human spaceflight medical, environmental, behavioral, and human factors standards. This document contains a detailed description of the resource accommodations, interfaces, and environments to be provided by the Constellation Program (CxP) to support the HRP research in transit and on the lunar surface. Covered, specifically, are the requirements for mass and volume transport; crew availability; ground operations, baseline data collection, and payload processing; power, and data. Volumes and mass are given for transport of conditioned samples only. They do not account for the engineering solution that the Constellation Program will implement (refrigerator/freezer volume/mass). This document does not account for requirements on the Orion vehicle for transportation to and from the International Space Station (ISS). The ISS Program has supplied requirements for this mission.

  6. Genetics of alcohol dependence and social work research: do they mix?

    PubMed

    Hesselbrock, Michie N; Hesselbrock, Victor M; Chartier, Karen G

    2013-01-01

    Since completion of the mapping of the human genome in early 2000, tremendous progress has been made in the identification of many different genes associated with our health and across diseases. Although social work researchers are not expected to conduct genetic research at the molecular level, it is imperative that we are able to understand the basic genetic findings related to behavioral problems and are able to translate and integrate this information into psychosocial treatment approaches and program development. This article is an introduction and overview of genetic approaches, using studies of the genetics of alcoholism to exemplify important issues. The literature review is not comprehensive and focuses primarily on the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism project as an example of a multidisciplinary and integrative approach to the genetic study of a major health problem often encountered in social work practice.

  7. Perspectives on human stem cell research.

    PubMed

    Jung, Kyu Won

    2009-09-01

    Human stem cell research draws not only scientists' but the public's attention. Human stem cell research is considered to be able to identify the mechanism of human development and change the paradigm of medical practices. However, there are heated ethical and legal debates about human stem cell research. The core issue is that of human dignity and human life. Some prefer human adult stem cell research or iPS cell research, others hES cell research. We do not need to exclude any type of stem cell research because each has its own merits and issues, and they can facilitate the scientific revolution when working together.

  8. Overview of symposium "Systems Genetics in Nutrition and Obesity Research".

    PubMed

    Kalupahana, Nishan S; Moustaid-Moussa, Naima

    2011-03-01

    Systems genetics is a novel approach for identifying the complex genetic architecture of quantitative traits and gene-environment interactions via detection of connections from genetic variation through intermediate phenotypes to overlying systems level phenotypes. This symposium, conducted at the Experimental Biology 2010 conference, aimed at educating nutrition researchers about the use of systems genetics as a tool for linking genetic variation to nutrient metabolism and energy balance and their overlying effects on health and disease. Basic concepts of systems genetics and the analytical framework used in these studies were presented. Further, the utility of genetic reference populations for gene-environment interaction studies along with specific studies addressing genetic variation in responsiveness to nutrients were discussed.

  9. Genetic Changes Shaping the Human Brain

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Byoung-il; Jayaraman, Divya; Walsh, Christopher A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary The development and function of our brain are governed by a genetic blueprint, which reflects dynamic changes over the history of evolution. Recent progress in genetics and genomics, facilitated by next-generation sequencing and single-cell sorting, has identified numerous genomic loci that are associated with a neuroanatomical or neurobehavioral phenotype. Here, we review some of the genetic changes in both protein-coding and noncoding regions that affect brain development and evolution, as well as recent progress in brain transcriptomics. Understanding these genetic changes may provide novel insights into neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism and schizophrenia. PMID:25710529

  10. Seeking perfection: a Kantian look at human genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Gunderson, Martin

    2007-01-01

    It is tempting to argue that Kantian moral philosophy justifies prohibiting both human germ-line genetic engineering and non-therapeutic genetic engineering because they fail to respect human dignity. There are, however, good reasons for resisting this temptation. In fact, Kant's moral philosophy provides reasons that support genetic engineering-even germ-line and non-therapeutic. This is true of Kant's imperfect duties to seek one's own perfection and the happiness of others. It is also true of the categorical imperative. Kant's moral philosophy does, however, provide limits to justifiable genetic engineering.

  11. [Application of genetic diversity in the researches on rodents].

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhu; Yang, Chun-Wen; Xu, Yan-Chun; Jin, Zhi-Min; Ma, Jian-Zhang

    2014-02-01

    Genetic diversity is the base of the species diversity and ecosystem diversity, and also the foundation for biological evolution and species differentiation. Furthermore, genetic diversity is important evidence for evaluation of biological resources of nature. The genetic diversity data from a wide variety of rodents have many complex applications. We summarized the application of rodent prevention, the origin and differentiation including evolutionary history of rodents, the potential adaptation of rodents, the dynamics of population and regulatory mechanisms, and the conservation biology of rodents. Researches in the future should focus on the systematic study on the relationships between population dynamics and genetic diversity, and long-term monitoring of genetic diversity of rodents.

  12. Patenting genes and genetic research: good or bad for innovation?

    PubMed

    Arnold, Beth E; Ogielska-Zei, Eva

    2002-01-01

    Our goal with this article is to inform the debate over gene patenting, by providing an understanding of (a) the scope of patent claims that are actually being issued on genetic inventions in the United States, (b) the issues that impact their enforcement, and (c) the role that patents and patent licensing play in the commercialization of genetic technologies and products. We conclude by discussing whether the current legal regime effectively balances the beneficial role of patents in the development of new genetic technologies and products against negative impacts on genetic research or clinical genetic testing, or whether the current laws should be amended.

  13. Mine, Yours, Ours? Sharing Data on Human Genetic Variation

    PubMed Central

    Montinaro, Francesco; Capocasa, Marco; Sanna, Emanuele; Bisol, Giovanni Destro

    2012-01-01

    The achievement of a robust, effective and responsible form of data sharing is currently regarded as a priority for biological and bio-medical research. Empirical evaluations of data sharing may be regarded as an indispensable first step in the identification of critical aspects and the development of strategies aimed at increasing availability of research data for the scientific community as a whole. Research concerning human genetic variation represents a potential forerunner in the establishment of widespread sharing of primary datasets. However, no specific analysis has been conducted to date in order to ascertain whether the sharing of primary datasets is common-practice in this research field. To this aim, we analyzed a total of 543 mitochondrial and Y chromosomal datasets reported in 508 papers indexed in the Pubmed database from 2008 to 2011. A substantial portion of datasets (21.9%) was found to have been withheld, while neither strong editorial policies nor high impact factor proved to be effective in increasing the sharing rate beyond the current figure of 80.5%. Disaggregating datasets for research fields, we could observe a substantially lower sharing in medical than evolutionary and forensic genetics, more evident for whole mtDNA sequences (15.0% vs 99.6%). The low rate of positive responses to e-mail requests sent to corresponding authors of withheld datasets (28.6%) suggests that sharing should be regarded as a prerequisite for final paper acceptance, while making authors deposit their results in open online databases which provide data quality control seems to provide the best-practice standard. Finally, we estimated that 29.8% to 32.9% of total resources are used to generate withheld datasets, implying that an important portion of research funding does not produce shared knowledge. By making the scientific community and the public aware of this important aspect, we may help popularize a more effective culture of data sharing. PMID:22679483

  14. Probing genetic overlap among complex human phenotypes.

    PubMed

    Rzhetsky, Andrey; Wajngurt, David; Park, Naeun; Zheng, Tian

    2007-07-10

    Geneticists and epidemiologists often observe that certain hereditary disorders cooccur in individual patients significantly more (or significantly less) frequently than expected, suggesting there is a genetic variation that predisposes its bearer to multiple disorders, or that protects against some disorders while predisposing to others. We suggest that, by using a large number of phenotypic observations about multiple disorders and an appropriate statistical model, we can infer genetic overlaps between phenotypes. Our proof-of-concept analysis of 1.5 million patient records and 161 disorders indicates that disease phenotypes form a highly connected network of strong pairwise correlations. Our modeling approach, under appropriate assumptions, allows us to estimate from these correlations the size of putative genetic overlaps. For example, we suggest that autism, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia share significant genetic overlaps. Our disease network hypothesis can be immediately exploited in the design of genetic mapping approaches that involve joint linkage or association analyses of multiple seemingly disparate phenotypes.

  15. Validation of human clinical genetic tests.

    PubMed

    Peris-Vicente, Juan; Ochoa-Arand, Enrique; Carda-Broch, Samuel; Esteve-Romero, Josep

    2014-01-01

    In the last ten years, a high amount of genetic assays has been developed for molecular biopathology and genetic laboratories of the hospitals, mainly developed and provided by external companies. In some cases, the specialized staff members of the hospitals (doctors, biopathologists, geneticists or pharmacists) develop their own methods. The validation of these methods is required before their use in clinical testing, in order to assess its reliability. Analytical methods are validated under the requirements of International Guidelines, but validation procedures for clinical genetic tests are under study and need clarifications. In this manuscript, the main information related to the field of genetic validation is revised, including statistics, explaining the difficulty of validation for some of the developed genetic tests. The provided information is in agreement with all the International Guides. The information could be useful by the workers daily performing this kind of analysis.

  16. Genetic knowledge and moral responsibility: ambiguity at the interface of genetic research and clinical practice.

    PubMed

    Pullman, D; Hodgkinson, K

    2006-03-01

    Despite a rapidly expanding literature on the issue of duty to warn at-risk relatives in the context of clinical genetic testing, little has been written on parallel issues with regard to the management of genetic research results. Some might view this lack as an indication that there is little to discuss in this regard. That is, standard practice is that data obtained through medical research should not be treated as though they are clinically relevant, and this standard should hold for genetic research as well. This paper challenges this conclusion and its underlying assumptions. We argue that the line between genetic research and clinical practice is often ambiguous. In some cases, research data gathered from a very small number of subjects could have immediate clinical implications. Hence, it is unethical for genetic researchers to absolve themselves of clinical responsibilities for research subjects and/or their families, on the grounds that the data were obtained for research purposes. Indeed, we argue that it could well be unethical to embark on some forms of genetic research unless advance arrangements have been made for genetic counseling and clinical follow-up. Furthermore, in some cases, it might be unethical to enroll subjects in studies if the subjects are unwilling to receive their individual results.

  17. Baboons as a model to study genetics and epigenetics of human disease.

    PubMed

    Cox, Laura A; Comuzzie, Anthony G; Havill, Lorena M; Karere, Genesio M; Spradling, Kimberly D; Mahaney, Michael C; Nathanielsz, Peter W; Nicolella, Daniel P; Shade, Robert E; Voruganti, Saroja; VandeBerg, John L

    2013-01-01

    A major challenge for understanding susceptibility to common human diseases is determining genetic and environmental factors that influence mechanisms underlying variation in disease-related traits. The most common diseases afflicting the US population are complex diseases that develop as a result of defects in multiple genetically controlled systems in response to environmental challenges. Unraveling the etiology of these diseases is exceedingly difficult because of the many genetic and environmental factors involved. Studies of complex disease genetics in humans are challenging because it is not possible to control pedigree structure and often not practical to control environmental conditions over an extended period of time. Furthermore, access to tissues relevant to many diseases from healthy individuals is quite limited. The baboon is a well-established research model for the study of a wide array of common complex diseases, including dyslipidemia, hypertension, obesity, and osteoporosis. It is possible to acquire tissues from healthy, genetically characterized baboons that have been exposed to defined environmental stimuli. In this review, we describe the genetic and physiologic similarity of baboons with humans, the ability and usefulness of controlling environment and breeding, and current genetic and genomic resources. We discuss studies on genetics of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, hypertension, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and intrauterine growth restriction using the baboon as a model for human disease. We also summarize new studies and resources under development, providing examples of potential translational studies for targeted interventions and therapies for human disease.

  18. Baboons as a Model to Study Genetics and Epigenetics of Human Disease

    PubMed Central

    Cox, Laura A.; Comuzzie, Anthony G.; Havill, Lorena M.; Karere, Genesio M.; Spradling, Kimberly D.; Mahaney, Michael C.; Nathanielsz, Peter W.; Nicolella, Daniel P.; Shade, Robert E.; Voruganti, Saroja; VandeBerg, John L.

    2013-01-01

    A major challenge for understanding susceptibility to common human diseases is determining genetic and environmental factors that influence mechanisms underlying variation in disease-related traits. The most common diseases afflicting the US population are complex diseases that develop as a result of defects in multiple genetically controlled systems in response to environmental challenges. Unraveling the etiology of these diseases is exceedingly difficult because of the many genetic and environmental factors involved. Studies of complex disease genetics in humans are challenging because it is not possible to control pedigree structure and often not practical to control environmental conditions over an extended period of time. Furthermore, access to tissues relevant to many diseases from healthy individuals is quite limited. The baboon is a well-established research model for the study of a wide array of common complex diseases, including dyslipidemia, hypertension, obesity, and osteoporosis. It is possible to acquire tissues from healthy, genetically characterized baboons that have been exposed to defined environmental stimuli. In this review, we describe the genetic and physiologic similarity of baboons with humans, the ability and usefulness of controlling environment and breeding, and current genetic and genomic resources. We discuss studies on genetics of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, hypertension, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, and intrauterine growth restriction using the baboon as a model for human disease. We also summarize new studies and resources under development, providing examples of potential translational studies for targeted interventions and therapies for human disease. PMID:24174436

  19. Informed consent for human genetic and genomic studies: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Khan, A; Capps, B J; Sum, M Y; Kuswanto, C N; Sim, K

    2014-09-01

    As genetic and genomic studies grow in scale, there are ethical concerns related to the collection and use of genetic information. The emergence of large public databases potentially redefine the terms of participation in genetic and genomic research, and suggests the changing application of traditional ethical principles such as privacy or consent. For this study, we wanted to see whether such developments are reflected in the informed consent processes in human genetic and genomic studies. Therefore, we performed a systematic review of the empirical studies that examined informed consent involving large genetic databases in human genetic and genomic studies, grouped the identified issues related to the different stakeholders (including subjects, researchers, and institutional review boards) and discussed the limitations and implications of these findings. Major themes related to the place of bioethical considerations, procured tissues, people involved, process of informed consent and study procedures. Frequently raised issues included confidentiality of participants, documentation of informed consent, public attitudes, future use of participant samples or data, and disclosure of results. Awareness and attention to these bioethical issues as well as assiduousness in managing these concerns in genetic/genomic research would further strengthen and safeguard the rights, safety and well-being of genetic research participants. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Research advances on animal genetics in China in 2015.

    PubMed

    Bo, Zhang; Xiaofang, Chen; Xun, Huang; Xiao, Yang

    2016-06-20

    Chinese scientists have made significant achievements in the field of animal genetics in 2015. Incomplete statistics show that among all the publications of 2015 involving nematode (Caenorhabditis elegans), fly (Drosophila melanogaster), zebrafish (Danio rerio), African clawed frog (Xenopus) or mice (Mus musculus), about 1/5 publications are from China. Many innovative studies were published in high-impact international academic journals by Chinese scientists, including the identification of a putative magnetic receptor MagR, the genetic basis for the regulation of wing polyphenism in the insect brown planthopper (Nilaparvata lugens), DNA N(6)-methyladenine (6mA) modification in the Drosophila genome, a novel molecular mechanism regarding the dendritic spine pruning and maturation in the mammals, the mechanism for the CREB coactivator CRTC2 in the regulation of hepatic lipid metabolism, the control of systemic inflammation by neurotransmitter dopamine, the role of Gasdermin protein family in triggering pyroptosis, a parvalbumin-positive excitatory visual pathway to trigger fear responses in mice, etc. Chinese scientists have also made important contributions in genome editing via TALEN or CRISPR/Cas system. According to incomplete statistics, more than 1/5 of the publications related to genome editing in 2015 are from China, where a variety of animals with different approaches were targeted, ranging from the worm to primates. Particularly, CRISPR/Cas9-mediated gene editing in human tripronuclear zygotes was successfully achieved for the first time. China has been one of the leading countries in genome sequencing in recent years, and Chinese scientists reported the sequence and annotation of the genomes of several important animal species in 2015, including goose (Anser cygnoides), Schlegel's Japanese Gecko (Gekko japonicus), grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus), large yellow croaker (Larimichthys crocea) and pig (Sus scrofa). They further analyzed the genome

  1. The genetics of kinship in remote human groups.

    PubMed

    Zvénigorosky, Vincent; Crubézy, Eric; Gibert, Morgane; Thèves, Catherine; Hollard, Clémence; Gonzalez, Angéla; Fedorova, Sardana A; Alexeev, Anatoly N; Bravina, Rozalia I; Ludes, Bertrand; Keyser, Christine

    2016-11-01

    For fifteen years, part of the work of our research team has been focused on the study of parental links between individuals living hundreds or thousands of years ago, whose remains have been found in single graves or large funerary complexes. These studies have been undertaken using methods developed by forensic genetics to identify individuals, mainly based on the genotyping of autosomal STR (Short Tandem Repeats). Issues arose from this work, namely the limits of studying small numbers of subjects, originating from groups of finite sizes where kinships cannot be inferred a priori and for which reference allelic frequencies do not exist. Although ideal human populations are rare when undertaking such studies, the Yakuts of Eastern Siberia constitute a very advantageous model, with large numbers of small pastoral communities and well-preserved archaeological material. The study of kinship in the ancient Yakuts allowed us to highlight the difficulties in analysing genetic data from small ancient human groups and to develop a strategy to improve the accuracy of statistical computations. This work describes this strategy and possible solutions to the study of populations outside of the frame of reference of global meta-populations, due either to isolation, remoteness or antiquity.

  2. Review of approaches to the detection of genetic damage in the human fetus

    SciTech Connect

    Everson, R.B.

    1987-10-01

    Studies in experimental animals links between genetic damage to the fetus and the etiology of several disorders, including fetal loss, teratogenesis, and cancer. Methods for measuring genetic damage directly in the human fetus could provide epidemiologists and clinical researchers with powerful tools for investigating similar associations in humans. Current methods potentially available for such studies include assays for mutagenic substances in human body fluids and for measuring modifications to genetic material at the three levels of organization of genetic material: the chromosome, the gene or specific locus, and chemical DNA. Results of studies using fetal tissues to investigate each of these end points are reviewed, emphasizing studies of chemical modifications to DNA nucleotides detected in the human plancenta.

  3. Reflections on the Field of Human Genetics: A Call for Increased Disease Genetics Theory

    PubMed Central

    Schrodi, Steven J.

    2016-01-01

    Development of human genetics theoretical models and the integration of those models with experiment and statistical evaluation are critical for scientific progress. This perspective argues that increased effort in disease genetics theory, complementing experimental, and statistical efforts, will escalate the unraveling of molecular etiologies of complex diseases. In particular, the development of new, realistic disease genetics models will help elucidate complex disease pathogenesis, and the predicted patterns in genetic data made by these models will enable the concurrent, more comprehensive statistical testing of multiple aspects of disease genetics predictions, thereby better identifying disease loci. By theoretical human genetics, I intend to encompass all investigations devoted to modeling the heritable architecture underlying disease traits and studies of the resulting principles and dynamics of such models. Hence, the scope of theoretical disease genetics work includes construction and analysis of models describing how disease-predisposing alleles (1) arise, (2) are transmitted across families and populations, and (3) interact with other risk and protective alleles across both the genome and environmental factors to produce disease states. Theoretical work improves insight into viable genetic models of diseases consistent with empirical results from linkage, transmission, and association studies as well as population genetics. Furthermore, understanding the patterns of genetic data expected under realistic disease models will enable more powerful approaches to discover disease-predisposing alleles and additional heritable factors important in common diseases. In spite of the pivotal role of disease genetics theory, such investigation is not particularly vibrant. PMID:27375680

  4. Reflections on the Field of Human Genetics: A Call for Increased Disease Genetics Theory.

    PubMed

    Schrodi, Steven J

    2016-01-01

    Development of human genetics theoretical models and the integration of those models with experiment and statistical evaluation are critical for scientific progress. This perspective argues that increased effort in disease genetics theory, complementing experimental, and statistical efforts, will escalate the unraveling of molecular etiologies of complex diseases. In particular, the development of new, realistic disease genetics models will help elucidate complex disease pathogenesis, and the predicted patterns in genetic data made by these models will enable the concurrent, more comprehensive statistical testing of multiple aspects of disease genetics predictions, thereby better identifying disease loci. By theoretical human genetics, I intend to encompass all investigations devoted to modeling the heritable architecture underlying disease traits and studies of the resulting principles and dynamics of such models. Hence, the scope of theoretical disease genetics work includes construction and analysis of models describing how disease-predisposing alleles (1) arise, (2) are transmitted across families and populations, and (3) interact with other risk and protective alleles across both the genome and environmental factors to produce disease states. Theoretical work improves insight into viable genetic models of diseases consistent with empirical results from linkage, transmission, and association studies as well as population genetics. Furthermore, understanding the patterns of genetic data expected under realistic disease models will enable more powerful approaches to discover disease-predisposing alleles and additional heritable factors important in common diseases. In spite of the pivotal role of disease genetics theory, such investigation is not particularly vibrant.

  5. Beliefs in genetic determinism and attitudes towards psychiatric genetic research: psychometric scale properties, construct associations, demographic correlates, and cross-cultural comparisons.

    PubMed

    Voracek, Martin; Swami, Viren; Loibl, Lisa Mariella; Furnham, Adrian

    2007-12-01

    Using two new scales, this study examined beliefs in genetic determinism and attitudes towards psychiatric genetic research in student samples from Austria, Malaysia, Romania, and the United Kingdom. For both constructs, effects of culture were detectable, whereas those related to key demographics were either small and inconsistent across samples (political orientation and religiosity) or zero (sex and age). Judged from factorial dimensionality and internal consistency, the psychometric properties of both scales were satisfactory. Belief in genetic determinism had lower prevalence and corresponded only modestly to positive attitudes towards psychiatric genetic research which had higher prevalence. The correlations of both constructs with a preference of inequality among social groups (social dominance orientation) were modest and inconsistent across samples. Both scales appear appropriate for cross-cultural applications, in particular for research into lay theories and public perceptions regarding genetic vs environmental effects on human behavior, mental disorders, and behavioral and psychiatric genetic research related to these.

  6. Special considerations in prognostic research in cancer involving genetic polymorphisms

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Analysis of genetic polymorphisms may help identify putative prognostic markers and determine the biological basis of variable prognosis in patients. However, in contrast to other variables commonly used in the prognostic studies, there are special considerations when studying genetic polymorphisms. For example, variable inheritance patterns (recessive, dominant, codominant, and additive genetic models) need to be explored to identify the specific genotypes associated with the outcome. In addition, several characteristics of genetic polymorphisms, such as their minor allele frequency and linkage disequilibrium among multiple polymorphisms, and the population substructure of the cohort investigated need to be accounted for in the analyses. In addition, in cancer research due to the genomic differences between the tumor and non-tumor DNA, differences in the genetic information obtained using these tissues need to be carefully assessed in prognostic studies. In this article, we review these and other considerations specific to genetic polymorphism by focusing on genetic prognostic studies in cancer. PMID:23773794

  7. Genetic modification of plant metabolism for human health benefits.

    PubMed

    Davies, Kevin M

    2007-09-01

    There has been considerable research progress over the past decade on elucidating biosynthetic pathways for important human health components of crops. This has enabled the use of genetic modification (GM) techniques to develop crop varieties with increased amounts of essential vitamins and minerals, and improved profiles of 'nutraceutical' compounds. Much of the research into vitamins and minerals has focused on generating new varieties of staple crops to improve the diet of populations in developing nations. Of particular note is the development of new rice lines with increased amounts of provitamin A and iron. Research on modifying production of nutraceuticals has generally been aimed at generating new crops for markets in the developed nations, commonly to deliver distinctive cultivars with high consumer appeal. Most progress on nutraceuticals has been made with just a few types of metabolites to date, in particular in the production of novel long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in oil-seed crops and to increase amounts of flavonoids and carotenoids in tomato and potato. However, given the rapid progress on elucidating plant metabolite biosynthetic pathways, wide-ranging success with metabolic engineering for levels of human health-related compounds in plants would be expected in the near future. A key aspect for future success will be better medical information to guide metabolic engineering endeavors. Although the desired levels of many vitamins are known, detailed information is lacking for most of the nutraceuticals that have attracted much interest over the past few years.

  8. Ecological genetics at the USGS National Wetlands Research Center

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Travis, Steven

    2006-01-01

    The Ecological Genetics Program at the USGS National Wetlands Research Center (NWRC) employs state-of-the-art DNA fingerprinting technologies in characterizing critical management aspects of the population biology of species of concern (fig. 1). The overarching themes of this program have been (1) the critical role that genetic diversity plays in maintaining population viability and (2) how management strategies might incorporate genetic information in preventing the decline of desirable species or in controlling the spread of invasive species.

  9. Parents' perspectives on participating in genetic research in autism.

    PubMed

    Trottier, Magan; Roberts, Wendy; Drmic, Irene; Scherer, Stephen W; Weksberg, Rosanna; Cytrynbaum, Cheryl; Chitayat, David; Shuman, Cheryl; Miller, Fiona A

    2013-03-01

    Genetic research in autism depends on the willingness of individuals with autism to participate; thus, there is a duty to assess participants' needs in the research process. We report on families' motives and expectations related to their participation in autism genetic research. Respondents valued having a genetic result, as it alleviates guilt, promotes awareness, and may be used to tailor interventions and for family planning. The act of participating was distinctly significant, as it provided personal control, a connection to autism experts, networking with families, and hope for the future. The results of this study highlight complex factors involved in families' decisions to participate in autism genetic research and provide points to consider for this population of research participants.

  10. Yeast: A Research Organism for Teaching Genetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Manney, Thomas R.; Manney, Monta L.

    1992-01-01

    Explains why laboratory strains of bakers yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, are particularly suited for classroom science activities. Describes the sexual life cycle of yeast and the genetic system with visible mutations. Presents an overview of activities that can be done with yeast and gives a source for teachers to obtain more information. (PR)

  11. Yeast: A Research Organism for Teaching Genetics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Manney, Thomas R.; Manney, Monta L.

    1992-01-01

    Explains why laboratory strains of bakers yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, are particularly suited for classroom science activities. Describes the sexual life cycle of yeast and the genetic system with visible mutations. Presents an overview of activities that can be done with yeast and gives a source for teachers to obtain more information. (PR)

  12. The etiology and molecular genetics of human pigmentation disorders.

    PubMed

    Baxter, Laura L; Pavan, William J

    2013-01-01

    Pigmentation, defined as the placement of pigment in skin, hair, and eyes for coloration, is distinctive because the location, amount, and type of pigmentation provides a visual manifestation of genetic heterogeneity in pathways regulating the pigment-producing cells, melanocytes. The scope of this genetic heterogeneity in humans ranges from normal to pathological pigmentation phenotypes. Clinically, normal human pigmentation encompasses a variety of skin and hair color as well as punctate pigmentation such as melanocytic nevi (moles) or ephelides (freckles), while abnormal human pigmentation exhibits markedly reduced or increased pigment levels, known as hypopigmentation and hyperpigmentation, respectively. Elucidation of the molecular genetics underlying pigmentation has revealed genes important for melanocyte development and function. Furthermore, many pigmentation disorders show additional defects in cells other than melanocytes, and identification of the genetic insults in these disorders has revealed pleiotropic genes, where a single gene is required for various functions in different cell types. Thus, unravelling the genetics of easily visualized pigmentation disorders has identified molecular similarities between melanocytes and less visible cell types/tissues, arising from a common developmental origin and/or shared genetic regulatory pathways. Herein we discuss notable human pigmentation disorders and their associated genetic alterations, focusing on the fact that the developmental genetics of pigmentation abnormalities are instructive for understanding normal pathways governing development and function of melanocytes. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. The etiology and molecular genetics of human pigmentation disorders

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Laura L.; Pavan, William J.

    2012-01-01

    Pigmentation, defined as the placement of pigment in skin, hair, and eyes for coloration, is distinctive because the location, amount, and type of pigmentation provides a visual manifestation of genetic heterogeneity in pathways regulating the pigment-producing cells, melanocytes. The scope of this genetic heterogeneity in humans ranges from normal to pathological pigmentation phenotypes. Clinically normal human pigmentation encompasses a variety of skin and hair color as well as with punctate pigmentation such as melanocytic nevi (moles) or ephelides (freckles), while clinically abnormal human pigmentation exhibits markedly reduced or increased pigment levels, known as hypopigmentation and hyperpigmentation, respectively. Elucidation of the molecular genetics underlying pigmentation has revealed genes important for melanocyte development and function. Furthermore, many pigmentation disorders show additional defects in cells other than melanocytes, and identification of the genetic insults in these disorders has revealed pleiotropic genes, where a single gene is required for various functions, often in different cell types. Thus unravelling the genetics of easily visualized pigmentation disorders has identified molecular similarities between melanocytes and less visible cell types/tissues, revealing a common cellular origin and/or common genetic regulatory pathways. Herein we discuss notable human pigmentation disorders and their associated genetic alterations, focusing on the fact that the developmental genetics of pigmentation abnormalities is instructive for understanding normal pathways governing development and function of melanocytes. PMID:23799582

  14. Human Genetics. Informational and Educational Materials, Vol. I, No. 1.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Clearinghouse for Human Genetic Diseases (DHEW/PHS), Rockville, MD.

    This catalogue, prepared by the National Clearinghouse for Human Genetic Diseases, provides educational and informational materials on the latest advances in testing, diagnosing, counseling, and treating individuals with a concern for genetic diseases. The materials include books, brochures, pamphlets, journal articles, audio cassettes,…

  15. Genetic Differential Sensitivity to Social Environments: Implications for Research

    PubMed Central

    McLanahan, Sara; Brooks-Gunn, Jeanne; Garfinkel, Irwin; Hobcraft, John; Notterman, Daniel

    2013-01-01

    Researchers have proposed a genetic differential sensitivity to social environmental (GDSE) model positing that individuals with certain genetic makeups are more sensitive to favorable and unfavorable environmental influences than those without these genetic makeups. We discuss several issues facing researchers who want to use GDSE to examine health: (1) the need for greater theorizing about the social environment to properly understand the size and direction of environmental influences; (2) the potential for combining multiple genetic markers to measure an individual’s genetic sensitivity to environmental influence; (3) how this model and exogenous shocks deal with gene–environment correlations; (4) implications of this model for public health and prevention; and (5) how life course and developmental theories may be used to inform GDSE research. PMID:23927507

  16. [Researches on genetics and genetic epidemiology of common complex diseases: challenge and strategies].

    PubMed

    Gu, Dong-feng

    2006-04-01

    With the rapid development of human genome project, increased genetic and population-based association studies are focused on the identification of the underlying susceptibility genes and contributions from gene-environment interaction to common complex diseases. Whole-genome association study with high-density single nucleotide polymorphisms is one of the most important milestones in that process. However, problems still exist in study design, data processing, and results interpretation. Large-scale cohort study or population-based case-control design with sufficient statistical power, new approaches to assess the gene-gene and gene-environment interactions, as guarantee of the consistency and replicability of these researches are crucial in the exploration of the causes of these common complex diseases.

  17. Genetic effects on gene expression across human tissues.

    PubMed

    Battle, Alexis; Brown, Christopher D; Engelhardt, Barbara E; Montgomery, Stephen B

    2017-10-11

    Characterization of the molecular function of the human genome and its variation across individuals is essential for identifying the cellular mechanisms that underlie human genetic traits and diseases. The Genotype-Tissue Expression (GTEx) project aims to characterize variation in gene expression levels across individuals and diverse tissues of the human body, many of which are not easily accessible. Here we describe genetic effects on gene expression levels across 44 human tissues. We find that local genetic variation affects gene expression levels for the majority of genes, and we further identify inter-chromosomal genetic effects for 93 genes and 112 loci. On the basis of the identified genetic effects, we characterize patterns of tissue specificity, compare local and distal effects, and evaluate the functional properties of the genetic effects. We also demonstrate that multi-tissue, multi-individual data can be used to identify genes and pathways affected by human disease-associated variation, enabling a mechanistic interpretation of gene regulation and the genetic basis of disease.

  18. Ethical Concerns About Human Genetic Enhancement in the Malay Science Fiction Novels.

    PubMed

    Isa, Noor Munirah; Hj Safian Shuri, Muhammad Fakhruddin

    2017-03-09

    Advancements in science and technology have not only brought hope to humankind to produce disease-free offspring, but also offer possibilities to genetically enhance the next generation's traits and capacities. Human genetic enhancement, however, raises complex ethical questions, such as to what extent should it be allowed? It has been a great challenge for humankind to develop robust ethical guidelines for human genetic enhancement that address both public concerns and needs. We believe that research about public concerns is necessary prior to developing such guidelines, yet the issues have not been thoroughly investigated in many countries, including Malaysia. Since the novel often functions as a medium for the public to express their concerns, this paper explores ethical concerns about human genetic enhancement expressed in four Malay science fiction novels namely Klon, Leksikon Ledang, Transgenesis Bisikan Rimba and Transgenik Sifar. Religion has a strong influence on the worldview of the Malays therefore some concerns such as playing God are obviously religious. Association of the negative image of scientists as well as the private research companies with the research on human genetic enhancement reflects the authors' concerns about the main motivations for conducting such research and the extent to which such research will benefit society.

  19. Research at the Institute of Forest Genetics, Rhinelander, Wisconsin.

    Treesearch

    Richard M. Jeffers

    1971-01-01

    Reports research at the Forest Genetics Institute in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, since its beginning in 1957. Describes the physical plant, study objectives, and work program. The latter includes studies of seed source, inheritance in white spruce, disease and insect resistance, interspecific hybridization, radiation genetics and radiobiology, vegetative propagation,...

  20. Tree genetic and improvement research at the University of Minnesota

    Treesearch

    Scott S. Pauley

    1970-01-01

    The School of Forestry's Tree Improvement Research Project was initiated in 1955. Studies in this area during the past fourteen years have been designed to accumulate information on genetic diversity in native and exotic tree species and isolate genetically superior lines for direct use in Minnesota forest plantings or for further selective breeding. Nursery...

  1. Genetic Signatures of Exceptional Longevity in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Sebastiani, Paola; Solovieff, Nadia; DeWan, Andrew T.; Walsh, Kyle M.; Puca, Annibale; Hartley, Stephen W.; Melista, Efthymia; Andersen, Stacy; Dworkis, Daniel A.; Wilk, Jemma B.; Myers, Richard H.; Steinberg, Martin H.; Montano, Monty; Baldwin, Clinton T.; Hoh, Josephine; Perls, Thomas T.

    2012-01-01

    Like most complex phenotypes, exceptional longevity is thought to reflect a combined influence of environmental (e.g., lifestyle choices, where we live) and genetic factors. To explore the genetic contribution, we undertook a genome-wide association study of exceptional longevity in 801 centenarians (median age at death 104 years) and 914 genetically matched healthy controls. Using these data, we built a genetic model that includes 281 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and discriminated between cases and controls of the discovery set with 89% sensitivity and specificity, and with 58% specificity and 60% sensitivity in an independent cohort of 341 controls and 253 genetically matched nonagenarians and centenarians (median age 100 years). Consistent with the hypothesis that the genetic contribution is largest with the oldest ages, the sensitivity of the model increased in the independent cohort with older and older ages (71% to classify subjects with an age at death>102 and 85% to classify subjects with an age at death>105). For further validation, we applied the model to an additional, unmatched 60 centenarians (median age 107 years) resulting in 78% sensitivity, and 2863 unmatched controls with 61% specificity. The 281 SNPs include the SNP rs2075650 in TOMM40/APOE that reached irrefutable genome wide significance (posterior probability of association = 1) and replicated in the independent cohort. Removal of this SNP from the model reduced the accuracy by only 1%. Further in-silico analysis suggests that 90% of centenarians can be grouped into clusters characterized by different “genetic signatures” of varying predictive values for exceptional longevity. The correlation between 3 signatures and 3 different life spans was replicated in the combined replication sets. The different signatures may help dissect this complex phenotype into sub-phenotypes of exceptional longevity. PMID:22279548

  2. The amino-acid mutational spectrum of human genetic disease.

    PubMed

    Vitkup, Dennis; Sander, Chris; Church, George M

    2003-01-01

    Nonsynonymous mutations in the coding regions of human genes are responsible for phenotypic differences between humans and for susceptibility to genetic disease. Computational methods were recently used to predict deleterious effects of nonsynonymous human mutations and polymorphisms. Here we focus on understanding the amino-acid mutation spectrum of human genetic disease. We compare the disease spectrum to the spectra of mutual amino-acid mutation frequencies, non-disease polymorphisms in human genes, and substitutions fixed between species. We find that the disease spectrum correlates well with the amino-acid mutation frequencies based on the genetic code. Normalized by the mutation frequencies, the spectrum can be rationalized in terms of chemical similarities between amino acids. The disease spectrum is almost identical for membrane and non-membrane proteins. Mutations at arginine and glycine residues are together responsible for about 30% of genetic diseases, whereas random mutations at tryptophan and cysteine have the highest probability of causing disease. The overall disease spectrum mainly reflects the mutability of the genetic code. We corroborate earlier results that the probability of a nonsynonymous mutation causing a genetic disease increases monotonically with an increase in the degree of evolutionary conservation of the mutation site and a decrease in the solvent-accessibility of the site; opposite trends are observed for non-disease polymorphisms. We estimate that the rate of nonsynonymous mutations with a negative impact on human health is less than one per diploid genome per generation.

  3. Preferences regarding genetic research results: comparing veterans and nonveterans responses.

    PubMed

    Arar, N; Seo, J; Lee, S; Abboud, H E; Copeland, L A; Noel, P; Parchman, M

    2010-01-01

    Communicating genetic research results to participants presents ethical challenges. Our objectives were to examine participants' preferences in receiving future genetic research results and to compare preferences reported by veteran and nonveterans participants. Secondary analysis was performed on data collected in 2000-2004 from 1,575 consent forms signed by Mexican-American participants enrolled in 2 genetic family studies (GFS) in San Antonio: The Family Investigation of Nephropathy and Diabetes (FIND) and the Extended FIND (EFIND). The consent forms for these studies contained multiple-choice questions to examine participants' preferences about receiving their (1) clinical lab results and (2) future genetic research results. The FIND and EFIND databases had information on subjects' demographic characteristics and some selected clinical variables. We identified veterans using the Veterans Health Administration's (VHA's) centralized data repository. We compared veterans' and nonveterans' preferences using Student's t test for continuous variables and χ² test for discrete variables. A logistic regression analyzed subjects' preference for receiving their research results, controlling for other socio-demographic and clinical variables. The sample included 275 (18%) veterans and 1,247 (82%) nonveterans. Our results indicated a strong desire among the majority of participants 1,445 (95%) in getting their clinical lab research results. Likewise, 93% expressed interest in being informed about their future genetic results. There was no significant difference in veterans' and nonveterans' preference to disclosure of the research results (χ² test; p > 0.05). Regression analysis showed no significant relationship (p = 0.449) between the outcome (receiving research results) and veterans' responses after controlling for demographics and educational levels. Participants believed they would prefer receiving their genetic research results. Veterans are similar to nonveterans

  4. Research on Sexual Orientation and Human Development: A Commentary.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strickland, Bonnie R.

    1995-01-01

    Reviews the evolution of research over the past 25 years on sexual orientation and its effects on human development, concluding that gay and lesbian interests and behavior appear to result from a complex interplay of genetic, prenatal, and environmental influences. Notes that gender identity develops early, especially for males, and is difficult…

  5. Research on Sexual Orientation and Human Development: A Commentary.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strickland, Bonnie R.

    1995-01-01

    Reviews the evolution of research over the past 25 years on sexual orientation and its effects on human development, concluding that gay and lesbian interests and behavior appear to result from a complex interplay of genetic, prenatal, and environmental influences. Notes that gender identity develops early, especially for males, and is difficult…

  6. Metabolic thrift and the genetic basis of human obesity

    PubMed Central

    O’Rourke, Robert W.

    2014-01-01

    Evolution has molded metabolic thrift within humans, a genetic heritage that, when thrust into our modern “obesogenic” environment, creates the current obesity crisis. Modern genetic analysis has identified genetic and epigenetic contributors to obesity, an understanding of which will guide the development of environmental, pharmacologic, and genetic therapeutic interventions. “The voyage was so long, food and water ran out. One hundred of the paddlers died; forty men remained. The voyagers finally reached Fitinui, then Aotona.”-From “The Story of Aka”, in The Native Culture in the Marquesas by E. S. Craighill Handy PMID:24368636

  7. Human Facial Shape and Size Heritability and Genetic Correlations.

    PubMed

    Cole, Joanne B; Manyama, Mange; Larson, Jacinda R; Liberton, Denise K; Ferrara, Tracey M; Riccardi, Sheri L; Li, Mao; Mio, Washington; Klein, Ophir D; Santorico, Stephanie A; Hallgrímsson, Benedikt; Spritz, Richard A

    2017-02-01

    The human face is an array of variable physical features that together make each of us unique and distinguishable. Striking familial facial similarities underscore a genetic component, but little is known of the genes that underlie facial shape differences. Numerous studies have estimated facial shape heritability using various methods. Here, we used advanced three-dimensional imaging technology and quantitative human genetics analysis to estimate narrow-sense heritability, heritability explained by common genetic variation, and pairwise genetic correlations of 38 measures of facial shape and size in normal African Bantu children from Tanzania. Specifically, we fit a linear mixed model of genetic relatedness between close and distant relatives to jointly estimate variance components that correspond to heritability explained by genome-wide common genetic variation and variance explained by uncaptured genetic variation, the sum representing total narrow-sense heritability. Our significant estimates for narrow-sense heritability of specific facial traits range from 28 to 67%, with horizontal measures being slightly more heritable than vertical or depth measures. Furthermore, for over half of facial traits, >90% of narrow-sense heritability can be explained by common genetic variation. We also find high absolute genetic correlation between most traits, indicating large overlap in underlying genetic loci. Not surprisingly, traits measured in the same physical orientation (i.e., both horizontal or both vertical) have high positive genetic correlations, whereas traits in opposite orientations have high negative correlations. The complex genetic architecture of facial shape informs our understanding of the intricate relationships among different facial features as well as overall facial development. Copyright © 2017 by the Genetics Society of America.

  8. Genetics and epigenetics of human retinoblastoma.

    PubMed

    Benavente, Claudia A; Dyer, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    Retinoblastoma is a pediatric tumor of the developing retina from which the genetic basis for cancer development was first described. Inactivation of both copies of the RB1 gene is the predominant initiating genetic lesion in retinoblastoma and is rate limiting for tumorigenesis. Recent whole-genome sequencing of retinoblastoma uncovered a tumor that had no coding-region mutations or focal chromosomal lesions other than in the RB1 gene, shifting the paradigm in the field. The retinoblastoma genome can be very stable; therefore, epigenetic deregulation of tumor-promoting pathways is required for tumorigenesis. This review highlights the genetic and epigenetic changes in retinoblastoma that have been reported, with special emphasis on recent whole-genome sequencing and epigenetic analyses that have identified novel candidate genes as potential therapeutic targets.

  9. A Developmental-Genetic Model of Alcoholism: Implications for Genetic Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Devor, Eric J.

    1994-01-01

    Research for biological-genetic markers of alcoholism is discussed in context of a multifactorial, heterogeneous, developmental model. Suggested that strategies used in linkage and association studies will require modification. Also suggested several extant associations of genetic markers represent true secondary interactive phenomena that alter…

  10. A Developmental-Genetic Model of Alcoholism: Implications for Genetic Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Devor, Eric J.

    1994-01-01

    Research for biological-genetic markers of alcoholism is discussed in context of a multifactorial, heterogeneous, developmental model. Suggested that strategies used in linkage and association studies will require modification. Also suggested several extant associations of genetic markers represent true secondary interactive phenomena that alter…

  11. Molecular Genetic Study of Human Esophageal Carcinoma

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1991-07-16

    proliferation. Some DNA tumor virus have been shown to be the causative agent for human cancer, as human papilloma - virus (HPV) was associated with...genital tumors. Gene products, such as SV40 tumor antigen, Ela and Elb in adenovirus, E6 and E7 protein of human papilloma virus type 16 and type 18...F.J., Syrjanen, S., Shen, Q., J.I, H., & Kyrjanen, K. Human papilloma virus (HPV) DNA in esophageal precursor lesions and squamous cell carcinomas

  12. Genetic and environmental factors in experimental and human cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Takayama, S.; Takebe, H.; Gelboin, H.V.; MaChahon, B.; Matsushima, T.; Sugimura, T.

    1980-01-01

    Recently technological advances in assaying mutagenic principles have revealed that there are many mutagens in the environment, some of which might be carcinogenic to human beings. Other advances in genetics have shown that genetic factors might play an important role in the induction of cancer in human beings, e.g., the high incidence of skin cancers in patients with xeroderma pigmentosum. These proceedings deal with the relationships between genetic and environmental factors in carcinogenesis. The contributors cover mixed-function oxidases, pharmacogenetics, twin studies, DNA repair, immunology, and epidemiology.

  13. Human Factors Research and Nuclear Safety.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moray, Neville P., Ed.; Huey, Beverly M., Ed.

    The Panel on Human Factors Research Needs in Nuclear Regulatory Research was formed by the National Research Council in response to a request from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC). The NRC asked the research council to conduct an 18-month study of human factors research needs for the safe operation of nuclear power plants. This report…

  14. The support of human genetic evidence for approved drug indications.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Matthew R; Tipney, Hannah; Painter, Jeffery L; Shen, Judong; Nicoletti, Paola; Shen, Yufeng; Floratos, Aris; Sham, Pak Chung; Li, Mulin Jun; Wang, Junwen; Cardon, Lon R; Whittaker, John C; Sanseau, Philippe

    2015-08-01

    Over a quarter of drugs that enter clinical development fail because they are ineffective. Growing insight into genes that influence human disease may affect how drug targets and indications are selected. However, there is little guidance about how much weight should be given to genetic evidence in making these key decisions. To answer this question, we investigated how well the current archive of genetic evidence predicts drug mechanisms. We found that, among well-studied indications, the proportion of drug mechanisms with direct genetic support increases significantly across the drug development pipeline, from 2.0% at the preclinical stage to 8.2% among mechanisms for approved drugs, and varies dramatically among disease areas. We estimate that selecting genetically supported targets could double the success rate in clinical development. Therefore, using the growing wealth of human genetic data to select the best targets and indications should have a measurable impact on the successful development of new drugs.

  15. Human genome project: New tools for tomorrow's health research

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-01-01

    The Human Genome Project is discussed within the context of the benefits that can be derived from human biological and biomedical research in the 21st century. Explanations are given about what chromosome mapping is and the different kinds that exist. Next, model organisms that were developed to better understand and interpret genetic information are discussed, as well as the database that the project will develop and the training opportunities that such a database will afford to emerging technologies. Finally, a review is given of the personal and social implications stemming from greater genetic knowledge.

  16. Consulting the community: public expectations and attitudes about genetics research

    PubMed Central

    Etchegary, Holly; Green, Jane; Dicks, Elizabeth; Pullman, Daryl; Street, Catherine; Parfrey, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    Genomic discoveries and technologies promise numerous opportunities for improving health. Key to these potential health improvements, however, are health-care consumers' understanding and acceptance of these new developments. We identified community groups and invited them to a public information-consultation session in order to explore public awareness, perception and expectations about genetics and genomics research. One hundred and four members of seven community groups in Newfoundland, Canada took part in the community sessions. Content analysis of participant comments revealed they were largely hopeful about genetics research in its capacity to improve health; however, they did not accept such research uncritically. Complex issues arose during the community consultations, including the place of genetics in primary care, the value of genetics for personal health, and concerns about access to and uses of genetic information. Participants unequivocally endorsed the value of public engagement with these issues. The rapid pace of discoveries in genomics research offers exciting opportunities to improve population health. However, public support will be crucial to realize health improvements. Our findings suggest that regular, transparent dialog between researchers and the public could allow a greater understanding of the research process, as well as assist in the design of efficient and effective genetic health services, informed by the public that will use them. PMID:23591403

  17. Views of Black Nurses Toward Genetic Research and Testing

    PubMed Central

    Powell-Young, Yolanda M.; Spruill, Ida J.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose To describe views and beliefs that Black nurses hold regarding several conceptual areas of genetic research and testing. Design Data were generated using a descriptive, cross-sectional design. The sample consisted of 384 Black nurses attending the 2009 annual conference of the National Black Nurses Association in Las Vegas, Nevada. Methods The chi-squared test was used to evaluate group differences by education level, functional area, age, and gender. Findings One half of the Black nurses surveyed believed the potential for the discriminative misuse of genetic information against minority populations exists. However, 84% of these nurses believed the possibility of information misuse should not be used as a barrier to participation in genetic research and testing by the Black populace. Conclusions Black nurses expressed concerns about the potential for discriminatory use of genetic information gleaned from research and testing. Yet, Black nurses recognize the importance of racial-ethnic minority participation in genetic research and testing. Clinical Relevance Participation in genetic research and testing by diverse populations will provide opportunities to improve the healthcare delivery system and aid the eradication of health disparities. More research is needed to clarify factors that contribute to the bifurcation of importance for participation, reluctance to participate, and what interventions might reduce reluctance. PMID:23470244

  18. Human Handedness: More Evidence for Genetic Involvement.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Longstreth, Langdon E.

    1980-01-01

    A series of environmental-genetical analyses of the left-handedness of 1,950 college students indicates that left-handedness is familial: it is more frequent in families in which at least one parent is left-handed. (Author/CM)

  19. 48 CFR 207.172 - Human research.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 3 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Human research. 207.172... OF DEFENSE ACQUISITION PLANNING ACQUISITION PLANNING Acquisition Plans 207.172 Human research. Any DoD component sponsoring research involving human subjects— (a) Is responsible for oversight...

  20. 48 CFR 207.172 - Human research.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 3 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Human research. 207.172... OF DEFENSE ACQUISITION PLANNING ACQUISITION PLANNING Acquisition Plans 207.172 Human research. Any DoD component sponsoring research involving human subjects— (a) Is responsible for oversight...

  1. Ethical Considerations in Human Movement Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olivier, Steve

    1995-01-01

    Highlights ethical issues for human subject research, identifying principles that form the construct of a code of research ethics and evaluating against this construct past human experimentation and current research in human movement studies. The efficacy of legislation and self-regulation is examined. Particular attention is given to the context…

  2. 48 CFR 207.172 - Human research.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 3 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Human research. 207.172... OF DEFENSE ACQUISITION PLANNING ACQUISITION PLANNING Acquisition Plans 207.172 Human research. Any DoD component sponsoring research involving human subjects— (a) Is responsible for oversight...

  3. 48 CFR 207.172 - Human research.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 3 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Human research. 207.172... OF DEFENSE ACQUISITION PLANNING ACQUISITION PLANNING Acquisition Plans 207.172 Human research. Any DoD component sponsoring research involving human subjects— (a) Is responsible for oversight...

  4. 48 CFR 207.172 - Human research.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 48 Federal Acquisition Regulations System 3 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Human research. 207.172... OF DEFENSE ACQUISITION PLANNING ACQUISITION PLANNING Acquisition Plans 207.172 Human research. Any DoD component sponsoring research involving human subjects— (a) Is responsible for oversight...

  5. Ethical Considerations in Human Movement Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olivier, Steve

    1995-01-01

    Highlights ethical issues for human subject research, identifying principles that form the construct of a code of research ethics and evaluating against this construct past human experimentation and current research in human movement studies. The efficacy of legislation and self-regulation is examined. Particular attention is given to the context…

  6. Estimating Sampling Selection Bias in Human Genetics: A Phenomenological Approach.

    PubMed

    Risso, Davide; Taglioli, Luca; De Iasio, Sergio; Gueresi, Paola; Alfani, Guido; Nelli, Sergio; Rossi, Paolo; Paoli, Giorgio; Tofanelli, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    This research is the first empirical attempt to calculate the various components of the hidden bias associated with the sampling strategies routinely-used in human genetics, with special reference to surname-based strategies. We reconstructed surname distributions of 26 Italian communities with different demographic features across the last six centuries (years 1447-2001). The degree of overlapping between "reference founding core" distributions and the distributions obtained from sampling the present day communities by probabilistic and selective methods was quantified under different conditions and models. When taking into account only one individual per surname (low kinship model), the average discrepancy was 59.5%, with a peak of 84% by random sampling. When multiple individuals per surname were considered (high kinship model), the discrepancy decreased by 8-30% at the cost of a larger variance. Criteria aimed at maximizing locally-spread patrilineages and long-term residency appeared to be affected by recent gene flows much more than expected. Selection of the more frequent family names following low kinship criteria proved to be a suitable approach only for historically stable communities. In any other case true random sampling, despite its high variance, did not return more biased estimates than other selective methods. Our results indicate that the sampling of individuals bearing historically documented surnames (founders' method) should be applied, especially when studying the male-specific genome, to prevent an over-stratification of ancient and recent genetic components that heavily biases inferences and statistics.

  7. Estimating Sampling Selection Bias in Human Genetics: A Phenomenological Approach

    PubMed Central

    Risso, Davide; Taglioli, Luca; De Iasio, Sergio; Gueresi, Paola; Alfani, Guido; Nelli, Sergio; Rossi, Paolo; Paoli, Giorgio; Tofanelli, Sergio

    2015-01-01

    This research is the first empirical attempt to calculate the various components of the hidden bias associated with the sampling strategies routinely-used in human genetics, with special reference to surname-based strategies. We reconstructed surname distributions of 26 Italian communities with different demographic features across the last six centuries (years 1447–2001). The degree of overlapping between "reference founding core" distributions and the distributions obtained from sampling the present day communities by probabilistic and selective methods was quantified under different conditions and models. When taking into account only one individual per surname (low kinship model), the average discrepancy was 59.5%, with a peak of 84% by random sampling. When multiple individuals per surname were considered (high kinship model), the discrepancy decreased by 8–30% at the cost of a larger variance. Criteria aimed at maximizing locally-spread patrilineages and long-term residency appeared to be affected by recent gene flows much more than expected. Selection of the more frequent family names following low kinship criteria proved to be a suitable approach only for historically stable communities. In any other case true random sampling, despite its high variance, did not return more biased estimates than other selective methods. Our results indicate that the sampling of individuals bearing historically documented surnames (founders' method) should be applied, especially when studying the male-specific genome, to prevent an over-stratification of ancient and recent genetic components that heavily biases inferences and statistics. PMID:26452043

  8. Genetic Effects on Human Behavior: Recent Family Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scarr, Sandra

    Although there continues to be controversy about the magnitude of genetic and environmental effects on human behavior, it is generally agreed by various scientific fields that individual differences in brain function and behavior must follow the same laws of variability as other human characteristics. Whether or not racial and ethnic group…

  9. Genetic engineering of human pluripotent cells using TALE nucleases.

    PubMed

    Hockemeyer, Dirk; Wang, Haoyi; Kiani, Samira; Lai, Christine S; Gao, Qing; Cassady, John P; Cost, Gregory J; Zhang, Lei; Santiago, Yolanda; Miller, Jeffrey C; Zeitler, Bryan; Cherone, Jennifer M; Meng, Xiangdong; Hinkley, Sarah J; Rebar, Edward J; Gregory, Philip D; Urnov, Fyodor D; Jaenisch, Rudolf

    2011-07-07

    Targeted genetic engineering of human pluripotent cells is a prerequisite for exploiting their full potential. Such genetic manipulations can be achieved using site-specific nucleases. Here we engineered transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) for five distinct genomic loci. At all loci tested we obtained human embryonic stem cell (ESC) and induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) clones carrying transgenic cassettes solely at the TALEN-specified location. Our data suggest that TALENs employing the specific architectures described here mediate site-specific genome modification in human pluripotent cells with similar efficiency and precision as do zinc-finger nucleases (ZFNs).

  10. Genetic and environmental factors in human osteoporosis.

    PubMed

    Özbaş, Halil; Tutgun Onrat, Serap; Özdamar, Kazım

    2012-12-01

    Osteoporosis is a common disorder, with prolongation of the average life span it has become a major public health problem. On the formation of osteoporosis genetic factors and environmental influences could play a role then it is considered as multi-factorial. Because a variety of functions to affect susceptibility to the formation of osteoporosis VDR-F, VDR-B, COL1A1, ESR1X, ESR1P and CTR are thought to be candidate genes. In this study, the aim is to investigate the relationship between these genes polymorphism and bone mineral density (BMD) values of lumbar vertebra and femoral neck in 188 Turkish people. Lumbar spine and femoral neck BMD of the individuals included in the study were measured by the dual X-ray absorptiometry method. The genotyped polymorphisms by simultaneous amplification of five regions of the genome, containing six SNPs of interest and detecting the amplified product, using the kit MetaBone Clinical Arrays(®). Statistical analyses indicated that; VDR-B gene polymorphisms major (P = 0.013), VDR-F polymorphisms have minor (P = 0.082) effect on femur BMD. None of the other genes has any significant effect on spinal BMD. Patient age, body mass index and diet has significant effect on femoral and spinal BMD. Osteoporosis is a multi-factorial disease and many genetic and non-genetic risk factors contribute to the development of osteoporosis. Early detection of a genetic predisposition to osteoporosis should allow delay and/or limit unfavorable changes in the bone tissue.

  11. Human longevity: Genetics or Lifestyle? It takes two to tango.

    PubMed

    Passarino, Giuseppe; De Rango, Francesco; Montesanto, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Healthy aging and longevity in humans are modulated by a lucky combination of genetic and non-genetic factors. Family studies demonstrated that about 25 % of the variation in human longevity is due to genetic factors. The search for genetic and molecular basis of aging has led to the identification of genes correlated with the maintenance of the cell and of its basic metabolism as the main genetic factors affecting the individual variation of the aging phenotype. In addition, studies on calorie restriction and on the variability of genes associated with nutrient-sensing signaling, have shown that ipocaloric diet and/or a genetically efficient metabolism of nutrients, can modulate lifespan by promoting an efficient maintenance of the cell and of the organism. Recently, epigenetic studies have shown that epigenetic modifications, modulated by both genetic background and lifestyle, are very sensitive to the aging process and can either be a biomarker of the quality of aging or influence the rate and the quality of aging. On the whole, current studies are showing that interventions modulating the interaction between genetic background and environment is essential to determine the individual chance to attain longevity.

  12. The genetics of innate immunity sensors and human disease.

    PubMed

    Pothlichet, Julien; Quintana-Murci, Lluis

    2013-04-01

    Since their discovery, innate immunity microbial sensors have been increasingly studied and shown to play a critical role in innate responses to microbes in several experimental in vitro, ex vivo, and animal models. However, their role in the human response to infection in natural conditions has just started to be deciphered, by means of clinical studies of primary immunodeficiencies and epidemiological genetic studies. Here, we summarize the major findings concerning the genetic diversity of the various families of microbial sensors in humans, and of other molecules involved in the signaling pathways they trigger. Specifically, we review the genetic associations, revealed by both clinical and epidemiological genetics studies, of microbial sensors from five different families: Toll-like receptors, C-type lectin receptors, NOD-like receptors, RIG-I-like receptors, and cytosolic DNA sensors. In particular, we consider the relationships between variation at the genes encoding these molecules and susceptibility to and the severity of infectious diseases and other clinical conditions associated with immune dysfunction, including autoimmunity, inflammation, allergy, and cancer. Despite the fact that the genetic links between innate immunity sensors and human disorders remain still limited, human genetics studies are increasingly improving our understanding of the genuine functions of microbial sensors and downstream signaling molecules in the natural setting.

  13. The Evolution of Human Intelligence and the Coefficient of Additive Genetic Variance in Human Brain Size

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Geoffrey F.; Penke, Lars

    2007-01-01

    Most theories of human mental evolution assume that selection favored higher intelligence and larger brains, which should have reduced genetic variance in both. However, adult human intelligence remains highly heritable, and is genetically correlated with brain size. This conflict might be resolved by estimating the coefficient of additive genetic…

  14. The Evolution of Human Intelligence and the Coefficient of Additive Genetic Variance in Human Brain Size

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Geoffrey F.; Penke, Lars

    2007-01-01

    Most theories of human mental evolution assume that selection favored higher intelligence and larger brains, which should have reduced genetic variance in both. However, adult human intelligence remains highly heritable, and is genetically correlated with brain size. This conflict might be resolved by estimating the coefficient of additive genetic…

  15. Taking a Stand: The Genetics Community's Responsibility for Intelligence Research.

    PubMed

    Callier, Shawneequa L; Bonham, Vence L

    2015-01-01

    There is a longstanding debate about genetics research into intelligence. Some scholars question the value of focusing on genetic contributions to intelligence in a society where social and environmental determinants powerfully influence cognitive ability and educational outcomes. Others warn that censoring certain research questions, such as inquiries about genetic differences in intellectual potential, compromises academic freedom. Still others view interest in this subject as a corollary to a long and troublesome history of eugenics research. The dawn of a new era in genome sequencing as a commodity will sustain scientific interest in the genetics of intelligence for the foreseeable future, but deep-rooted challenges threaten the scientific merit of the research. The use of imprecise definitions of study populations, the difficult nature of studying the environment, and the potential of researcher bias are inextricably linked with concerns about the trustworthiness and utility of research in this area. Leadership by the genetics community is essential to ensure the value and trustworthiness of these studies. © 2015 The Hastings Center.

  16. Genetic surfing in human populations: from genes to genomes.

    PubMed

    Peischl, Stephan; Dupanloup, Isabelle; Bosshard, Lars; Excoffier, Laurent

    2016-12-01

    Genetic surfing describes the spatial spread and increase in frequency of variants that are not lost by genetic drift and serial migrant sampling during a range expansion. Genetic surfing does not modify the total number of derived alleles in a population or in an individual genome, but it leads to a loss of heterozygosity along the expansion axis, implying that derived alleles are more often in homozygous state. Genetic surfing also affects selected variants on the wave front, making them behave almost like neutral variants during the expansion. In agreement with theoretical predictions, human genomic data reveals an increase in recessive mutation load with distance from Africa, an expansion load likely to have developed during the expansions of human populations out of Africa.

  17. Human genetics of infectious diseases: a unified theory

    PubMed Central

    Casanova, Jean-Laurent; Abel, Laurent

    2007-01-01

    Since the early 1950s, the dominant paradigm in the human genetics of infectious diseases postulates that rare monogenic immunodeficiencies confer vulnerability to multiple infectious diseases (one gene, multiple infections), whereas common infections are associated with the polygenic inheritance of multiple susceptibility genes (one infection, multiple genes). Recent studies, since 1996 in particular, have challenged this view. A newly recognised group of primary immunodeficiencies predisposing the individual to a principal or single type of infection is emerging. In parallel, several common infections have been shown to reflect the inheritance of one major susceptibility gene, at least in some populations. This novel causal relationship (one gene, one infection) blurs the distinction between patient-based Mendelian genetics and population-based complex genetics, and provides a unified conceptual frame for exploring the molecular genetic basis of infectious diseases in humans. PMID:17255931

  18. Translational genetics for diagnosis of human disorders of sex development.

    PubMed

    Baxter, Ruth M; Vilain, Eric

    2013-01-01

    Disorders of sex development (DSDs) are congenital conditions with discrepancies between the chromosomal, gonadal, and phenotypic sex of the individual. Such disorders have historically been difficult to diagnose and cause great stress to patients and their families. Genetic analysis of human samples has been instrumental in elucidating the molecules and pathways involved in the development of the bipotential gonad into a functioning testis or ovary. However, many DSD patients still do not receive a genetic diagnosis. New genetic and genomic technologies are expanding our knowledge of the underlying mechanism of DSDs and opening new avenues for clinical diagnosis. We review the genetic technologies that have elucidated the genes that are well established in sex determination in humans, discuss findings from more recent genomic technologies, and propose a new paradigm for clinical diagnosis of DSDs.

  19. Translational Genetics for Diagnosis of Human Disorders of Sex Development

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, Ruth M.; Vilain, Eric

    2015-01-01

    Disorders of sex development (DSDs) are congenital conditions with discrepancies between the chromosomal, gonadal, and phenotypic sex of the individual. Such disorders have historically been difficult to diagnose and cause great stress to patients and their families. Genetic analysis of human samples has been instrumental in elucidating the molecules and pathways involved in the development of the bipotential gonad into a functioning testis or ovary. However, many DSD patients still do not receive a genetic diagnosis. New genetic and genomic technologies are expanding our knowledge of the underlying mechanism of DSDs and opening new avenues for clinical diagnosis. We review the genetic technologies that have elucidated the genes that are well established in sex determination in humans, discuss findings from more recent genomic technologies, and propose a new paradigm for clinical diagnosis of DSDs. PMID:23875799

  20. Recombinant genetic libraries and human monoclonal antibodies.

    PubMed

    Adams, Jarrett J; Nelson, Bryce; Sidhu, Sachdev S

    2014-01-01

    In order to comprehensively manipulate the human proteome we require a vast repertoire of pharmacological reagents. To address these needs we have developed repertoires of synthetic antibodies by phage display, where diversified oligonucleotides are used to modify the complementarity-determining regions (CDRs) of a human antigen-binding fragment (Fab) scaffold. As diversity is produced outside the confines of the mammalian immune system, synthetic antibody libraries allow us to bypass several limitations of hybridoma technology while improving the experimental parameters under which pharmacological reagents are produced. Here we describe the methodologies used to produce synthetic antibody libraries from a single human framework with diversity restricted to four CDRs. These synthetic repertoires can be extremely functional as they produce highly selective, high affinity Fabs to the majority of soluble human antigens. Finally we describe selection methodologies that allow us to overcome immuno-dominance in our selections to target a variety of epitopes per antigen. Together these methodologies allow us to produce human monoclonal antibodies to manipulate the human proteome.

  1. Genetics of Human Sexual Behavior: Where We Are, Where We Are Going.

    PubMed

    Jannini, Emmanuele A; Burri, Andrea; Jern, Patrick; Novelli, Giuseppe

    2015-04-01

    One of the never-ending debates in the developing field of sexual medicine is the extent to which genetics and experiences (i.e., "nature and nurture") contribute to sexuality. The debate continues despite the fact that these two sides have different abilities to create a scientific environment to support their cause. Contemporary genetics has produced plenty of recent evidence, however, not always confirmed or sufficiently robust. On the other hand, the more traditional social theorists, frequently without direct evidence confirming their positions, criticize, sometimes with good arguments, the methods and results of the other side. The aim of this article is to critically evaluate existent evidence that used genetic approaches to understand human sexuality. An expert in sexual medicine (E.A.J.), an expert in medical genetics (G.N.), and two experts in genetic epidemiology and quantitative genetics, with particular scientific experience in female sexual dysfunction (A.B.) and in premature ejaculation (P.J.), contributed to this review. Expert opinion supported by critical review of the currently available literature. The existing literature on human sexuality provides evidence that many sexuality-related behaviors previously considered to be the result of cultural influences (such as mating strategies, attractiveness and sex appeal, propensity to fidelity or infidelity, and sexual orientation) or dysfunctions (such as premature ejaculation or female sexual dysfunction) seem to have a genetic component. Current evidence from genetic epidemiologic studies underlines the existence of biological and congenital factors regulating male and female sexuality. However, these relatively recent findings ask for replication in methodologically more elaborated studies. Clearly, increased research efforts are needed to further improve understanding the genetics of human sexuality. Jannini EA, Burri A, Jern P, and Novelli G. Genetics of human sexual behavior: Where we are, where

  2. Forest genetics research at the University of Michigan

    Treesearch

    Burton V. Barnes

    1970-01-01

    The purpose of the research program, as evidenced by results as well as current research and future direction, is to add to the knowledge of the ecology and genetics of forest trees. Although we are interested in the practical gains that are possible and being realized in practical tree improvement, our contribution is in basic studies that stimulate and challenge...

  3. Genetic Engineering of Animals for Medical Research: Students' Views.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Ruaraidh; Stanisstreet, Martin; O'Sullivan, Helen; Boyes, Edward

    1999-01-01

    Reports on the results of a survey meant to ascertain the views of 16- to 18-year-old students (n=778) on using animals in medical research. Suggests that students have no greater objection to the use of genetically engineered animals over naturally bred animals in medical research. Contains 16 references. (Author/WRM)

  4. Genetic Engineering of Animals for Medical Research: Students' Views.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, Ruaraidh; Stanisstreet, Martin; O'Sullivan, Helen; Boyes, Edward

    1999-01-01

    Reports on the results of a survey meant to ascertain the views of 16- to 18-year-old students (n=778) on using animals in medical research. Suggests that students have no greater objection to the use of genetically engineered animals over naturally bred animals in medical research. Contains 16 references. (Author/WRM)

  5. Mendelian genetics: Paradigm, conjecture, or research program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oldham, V.; Brouwer, W.

    Kuhn's model of the structure of scientific revolutions, Popper's hypothetic-deductive model of science, and Lakatos's methodology of competing research programs are applied to a historical episode in biology. Each of these three models offers a different explanatory system for the development, neglect, and eventual acceptance of Mendel's paradigm of inheritance. The authors conclude that both rational and nonrational criteria play an important role during times of crisis in science, when different research programs compete for acceptance. It is suggested that Kuhn's model, emphasizing the nonrational basis of science, and Popper's model, emphasizing the rational basis of science, can be used fruitfully in high school science courses.

  6. Family consent and the pursuit of better medicines through genetic research.

    PubMed

    Renegar, G; Rieser, P; Manasco, P

    2001-01-01

    Rapid changes in the science and technology related to genetic research are challenging scientists, health care providers, ethicists, regulators, patient groups, and the pharmaceutical industry to keep pace with ethically grounded, workable guidelines for both the research and clinical applications of human genetics. We describe the genetic research being conducted by one pharmaceutical company (GlaxoSmithKline) and how the company is addressing the ethical, legal, and social issues surrounding this research; discuss an industry working group's attempt to advance pharmacogenetic research by openly addressing and disseminating information on related ethical, legal, and regulatory issues; identify scientific and ethical differences among various types of genetic research; discuss potential implications of family consent on subject privacy and autonomy, data collection, and study conduct; and suggest points to consider when study sponsors, investigators, and ethics committees evaluate research proposals. Public and expert opinion regarding informed consent in genetic research is evolving as a result of increased education, discussion, and understanding of the relevant issues. Five years ago, there was strong support for anonymity in genetic research as a privacy safeguard. Now, an increasingly popular school of thought advocates against anonymity to preserve an individual's ability to withdraw and, if desired, access research results. It is important to recognize this evolution and address consent issues in a reasoned, practical, and consistent way, including input from patients and their families, health care providers, ethicists, scientists, regulatory bodies, research sponsors, and the lay community. Responsibility for assessing issues related to family consent for research should remain with local investigators, ethics boards, and study sponsors. A "one-size-fits-all" perspective in the form of new regulations, for example, would likely be a disservice to all.

  7. [Mitochondrial genetics and human essential hypertension].

    PubMed

    Chen, Hong; Guan, Min-xin

    2012-06-01

    Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) exhibits matrilineal inherence. Familial mitochondrial diseases caused by mtDNA mutations are generally involved in organs featuring high energy consumption, which include heart, brain and skeletal muscle. Recently, it has been found that some essential hypertension patients featured classical maternal inheritance, which has confirmed and enriched mtDNA mutations as one of the molecular mechanisms underlying maternally inherited hypertension. Nevertheless, more general as well as radical questions are still to be answered. This article reviews recent advance in mitochondrial genome evolution, mtDNA genetics and the role of mtDNA mutations in maternally inherited hypertension.

  8. Melanocortin MC₁ receptor in human genetics and model systems.

    PubMed

    Beaumont, Kimberley A; Wong, Shu S; Ainger, Stephen A; Liu, Yan Yan; Patel, Mira P; Millhauser, Glenn L; Smith, Jennifer J; Alewood, Paul F; Leonard, J Helen; Sturm, Richard A

    2011-06-11

    The melanocortin MC(1) receptor is a G-protein coupled receptor expressed in the melanocytes of the skin and hair and is known for its key role in the regulation of human pigmentation. Melanocortin MC(1) receptor activation after ultraviolet radiation exposure results in a switch from the red/yellow pheomelanin to the brown/black eumelanin pigment synthesis within cutaneous melanocytes; this pigment is then transferred to the surrounding keratinocytes of the skin. The increase in melanin maturation and uptake results in tanning of the skin, providing a physical protection of skin cells from ultraviolet radiation induced DNA damage. Melanocortin MC(1) receptor polymorphism is widespread within the Caucasian population and some variant alleles are associated with red hair colour, fair skin, poor tanning and increased risk of skin cancer. Here we will discuss the use of mouse coat colour models, human genetic association studies, and in vitro cell culture studies to determine the complex functions of the melanocortin MC(1) receptor and the molecular mechanisms underlying the association between melanocortin MC(1) receptor variant alleles and the red hair colour phenotype. Recent research indicates that melanocortin MC(1) receptor has many non-pigmentary functions, and that the increased risk of skin cancer conferred by melanocortin MC(1) receptor variant alleles is to some extent independent of pigmentation phenotypes. The use of new transgenic mouse models, the study of novel melanocortin MC(1) receptor response genes and the use of more advanced human skin models such as 3D skin reconstruction may provide key elements in understanding the pharmacogenetics of human melanocortin MC(1) receptor polymorphism.

  9. Evolutionary anthropology and genes: investigating the genetics of human evolution from excavated skeletal remains.

    PubMed

    Anastasiou, Evilena; Mitchell, Piers D

    2013-10-01

    The development of molecular tools for the extraction, analysis and interpretation of DNA from the remains of ancient organisms (paleogenetics) has revolutionised a range of disciplines as diverse as the fields of human evolution, bioarchaeology, epidemiology, microbiology, taxonomy and population genetics. The paper draws attention to some of the challenges associated with the extraction and interpretation of ancient DNA from archaeological material, and then reviews the influence of paleogenetics on the field of human evolution. It discusses the main contributions of molecular studies to reconstructing the evolutionary and phylogenetic relationships between extinct hominins (human ancestors) and anatomically modern humans. It also explores the evidence for evolutionary changes in the genetic structure of anatomically modern humans in recent millennia. This breadth of research has led to discoveries that would never have been possible using traditional approaches to human evolution. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Searching Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) for information on genetic loci involved in human disease.

    PubMed

    Borate, Bhavesh; Baxevanis, Andreas D

    2009-09-01

    Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a comprehensive compendium of information on human genes and genetic disorders, with a particular emphasis on the interplay between observed phenotypes and underlying genotypes. This unit focuses on the basic methodology for formulating OMIM searches and illustrates the types of information that can be retrieved from OMIM, including descriptions of clinical manifestations resulting from genetic abnormalities. This unit also provides information on additional relevant medical and molecular biology databases. A basic knowledge of OMIM should be part of the armamentarium of physicians and scientists with an interest in research on and clinical aspects of genetic disorders.

  11. Searching Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) for information on genetic loci involved in human disease.

    PubMed

    Baxevanis, Andreas D

    2012-04-01

    Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a comprehensive compendium of information on human genes and genetic disorders, with a particular emphasis on the interplay between observed phenotypes and underlying genotypes. This unit focuses on the basic methodology for formulating OMIM searches and illustrates the types of information that can be retrieved from OMIM, including descriptions of clinical manifestations resulting from genetic abnormalities. This unit also provides information on additional relevant medical and molecular biology databases. A basic knowledge of OMIM should be part of the armamentarium of physicians and scientists with an interest in research on the clinical aspects of genetic disorders.

  12. Genetics of human body size and shape: pleiotropic and independent genetic determinants of adiposity.

    PubMed

    Livshits, G; Yakovenko, K; Ginsburg, E; Kobyliansky, E

    1998-01-01

    The present study utilized pedigree data from three ethnically different populations of Kirghizstan, Turkmenia and Chuvasha. Principal component analysis was performed on a matrix of genetic correlations between 22 measures of adiposity, including skinfolds, circumferences and indices. Findings are summarized as follows: (1) All three genetic matrices were not positive definite and the first four factors retained even after exclusion RG > or = 1.0, explained from 88% to 97% of the total additive genetic variation in the 22 trials studied. This clearly emphasizes the massive involvement of pleiotropic gene effects in the variability of adiposity traits. (2) Despite the quite natural differences in pairwise correlations between the adiposity traits in the three ethnically different samples under study, factor analysis revealed a common basic pattern of covariability for the adiposity traits. In each of the three samples, four genetic factors were retained, namely, the amount of subcutaneous fat, the total body obesity, the pattern of distribution of subcutaneous fat and the central adiposity distribution. (3) Genetic correlations between the retained four factors were virtually non-existent, suggesting that several independent genetic sources may be governing the variation of adiposity traits. (4) Variance decomposition analysis on the obtained genetic factors leaves no doubt regarding the substantial familial and (most probably genetic) effects on variation of each factor in each studied population. The similarity of results in the three different samples indicates that the findings may be deemed valid and reliable descriptions of the genetic variation and covariation pattern of adiposity traits in the human species.

  13. Translational research in cancer genetics: the road less traveled.

    PubMed

    Schully, S D; Benedicto, C B; Gillanders, E M; Wang, S S; Khoury, M J

    2011-01-01

    Gene discoveries in cancer have the potential for clinical and public health applications. To take advantage of such discoveries, a translational research agenda is needed to take discoveries from the bench to population health impact. To assess the current status of translational research in cancer genetics, we analyzed the extramural grant portfolio of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) from Fiscal Year 2007, as well as the cancer genetic research articles published in 2007. We classified both funded grants and publications as follows: T0 as discovery research; T1 as research to develop a candidate health application (e.g., test or therapy); T2 as research that evaluates a candidate application and develops evidence-based recommendations; T3 as research that assesses how to integrate an evidence-based recommendation into cancer care and prevention; and T4 as research that assesses health outcomes and population impact. We found that 1.8% of the grant portfolio and 0.6% of the published literature was T2 research or beyond. In addition to discovery research in cancer genetics, a translational research infrastructure is urgently needed to methodically evaluate and translate gene discoveries for cancer care and prevention.

  14. Primer on Molecular Genetics; DOE Human Genome Program

    DOE R&D Accomplishments Database

    1992-04-01

    This report is taken from the April 1992 draft of the DOE Human Genome 1991--1992 Program Report, which is expected to be published in May 1992. The primer is intended to be an introduction to basic principles of molecular genetics pertaining to the genome project. The material contained herein is not final and may be incomplete. Techniques of genetic mapping and DNA sequencing are described.

  15. Primer on molecular genetics. DOE Human Genome Program

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-04-01

    This report is taken from the April 1992 draft of the DOE Human Genome 1991--1992 Program Report, which is expected to be published in May 1992. The primer is intended to be an introduction to basic principles of molecular genetics pertaining to the genome project. The material contained herein is not final and may be incomplete. Techniques of genetic mapping and DNA sequencing are described.

  16. Mendelian Genetics: Paradigm, Conjecture, or Research Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oldham, V.; Brouwer, W.

    1984-01-01

    Applies Kuhn's model of the structure of scientific revolutions, Popper's hypothetic-deductive model of science, and Lakatos' methodology of competing research programs to a historical biological episode. Suggests using Kuhn's model (emphasizing the nonrational basis of science) and Popper's model (emphasizing the rational basis of science) in…

  17. Mendelian Genetics: Paradigm, Conjecture, or Research Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oldham, V.; Brouwer, W.

    1984-01-01

    Applies Kuhn's model of the structure of scientific revolutions, Popper's hypothetic-deductive model of science, and Lakatos' methodology of competing research programs to a historical biological episode. Suggests using Kuhn's model (emphasizing the nonrational basis of science) and Popper's model (emphasizing the rational basis of science) in…

  18. Cancer Genetics and Signaling | Center for Cancer Research

    Cancer.gov

    The Cancer, Genetics, and Signaling (CGS) Group at the National Cancer Institute at Frederick  offers a competitive postdoctoral training and mentoring program focusing on molecular and genetic aspects of cancer. The CGS Fellows Program is designed to attract and train exceptional postdoctoral fellows interested in pursuing independent research career tracks. CGS Fellows participate in a structured mentoring program designed for scientific and career development and transition to independent positions.

  19. Your Genes, Your Choices: Exploring the Issues Raised by Genetic Research

    SciTech Connect

    Baker, C.

    1999-05-31

    Your Genes, Your Choices provides accurate information about the ethical, legal, and social implications of the Human Genome Project and genetic research in an easy-to-read style and format. Each chapter in the book begins with a brief vignette, which introduces an issue within a human story, and raises a question for the reader to think about as the basic science and information are presented in the rest of the chapter.

  20. The evolution of human genetic and phenotypic variation in Africa.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Michael C; Tishkoff, Sarah A

    2010-02-23

    Africa is the birthplace of modern humans, and is the source of the geographic expansion of ancestral populations into other regions of the world. Indigenous Africans are characterized by high levels of genetic diversity within and between populations. The pattern of genetic variation in these populations has been shaped by demographic events occurring over the last 200,000 years. The dramatic variation in climate, diet, and exposure to infectious disease across the continent has also resulted in novel genetic and phenotypic adaptations in extant Africans. This review summarizes some recent advances in our understanding of the demographic history and selective pressures that have influenced levels and patterns of diversity in African populations.

  1. Genetics of human episodic memory: dealing with complexity.

    PubMed

    Papassotiropoulos, Andreas; de Quervain, Dominique J-F

    2011-09-01

    Episodic memory is a polygenic behavioral trait with substantial heritability estimates. Despite its complexity, recent empirical evidence supports the notion that behavioral genetic studies of episodic memory might successfully identify trait-associated molecules and pathways. The development of high-throughput genotyping methods, of elaborated statistical analyses and of phenotypic assessment methods at the neural systems level will facilitate the reliable identification of novel memory-related genes. Importantly, a necessary crosstalk between behavioral genetic studies and investigation of causality by molecular genetic studies will ultimately pave the way towards the identification of biologically important, and hopefully druggable, genes and molecular pathways related to human episodic memory.

  2. Genetic Basis of Atherosclerosis: Insights from Mice and Humans

    PubMed Central

    Stylianou, Ioannis M.; Bauer, Robert C.; Reilly, Muredach P.; Rader, Daniel J.

    2012-01-01

    Atherosclerosis is a complex and heritable disease involving multiple cell types and the interactions of many different molecular pathways. The genetic and molecular mechanisms of atherosclerosis have in part been elucidated by mouse models; at least 100 different genes have been shown to influence atherosclerosis in mice. Importantly, unbiased genome-wide association studies have recently identified a number of novel loci robustly associated with atherosclerotic coronary artery disease (CAD). Here we review the genetic data elucidated from mouse models of atherosclerosis, as well as significant associations for human CAD. Furthermore, we discuss in greater detail some of these novel human CAD loci. The combination of mouse and human genetics has the potential to identify and validate novel genes that influence atherosclerosis, some of which may be candidates for new therapeutic approaches. PMID:22267839

  3. Teachers' Conceptions about the Genetic Determinism of Human Behaviour: A Survey in 23 Countries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castéra, Jérémy; Clément, Pierre

    2014-01-01

    This work analyses the answers to a questionnaire from 8,285 in-service and pre-service teachers from 23 countries, elaborated by the Biohead-Citizen research project, to investigate teachers' conceptions related to the genetic determinism of human behaviour. A principal components analysis is used to assess the main trends in all the interviewed…

  4. Human Genetic Variation. Grades 9-12. NIH Curriculum Supplement Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biological Sciences Curriculum Study, Colorado Springs.

    This curriculum supplement guide brings the latest medical discoveries to classrooms. This module focuses on the objectives of introducing students to the genetic variations of human beings, and developing an understanding of the relationship between biomedical research and personal and public health. This module includes five major sections: (1)…

  5. Teachers' Conceptions about the Genetic Determinism of Human Behaviour: A Survey in 23 Countries

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Castéra, Jérémy; Clément, Pierre

    2014-01-01

    This work analyses the answers to a questionnaire from 8,285 in-service and pre-service teachers from 23 countries, elaborated by the Biohead-Citizen research project, to investigate teachers' conceptions related to the genetic determinism of human behaviour. A principal components analysis is used to assess the main trends in all the interviewed…

  6. Genetic and epigenetic variation of human populations: An adaptive tale.

    PubMed

    Quintana-Murci, Lluis

    2016-01-01

    The evolutionary history of modern humans means much more than their demographic past. It includes the way in which humans have had to genetically adapt to the different environments they have encountered-nutritional, climatic or pathogenic-as well as the different epigenetic responses elicited by such environmental cues. Detecting how natural selection has affected human genome variability has proven to be a powerful tool to delineate genes and biological functions having played a key role in human adaptation, a variation which can also be involved in phenotypes of medical relevance. This article reviews several examples that illustrate well how different environmental pressures, particularly those imposed by pathogens and infectious diseases, have shaped the patterns of genetic and epigenetic variability currently observed in human populations. Copyright © 2016 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  7. Human genetics for non-scientists: Practical workshops for policy makers and opinion leaders

    SciTech Connect

    1995-12-31

    These workshops form part of a series of workshops that the Banbury and the DNA Learning Centers of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory have held for a number of years, introducing genetics, and the ways in which scientific research is done, to non-scientists. The purpose of the workshops as stated in the grant application was: {open_quotes}Our objective is to foster a better understanding of the societal impact of human genome research by providing basic information on genetics to non-scientists whose professions or special interests interface with genetic technology.... Participants will be chosen for their interest in human genetics and for their roles as opinion leaders in their own communities. Primary care physicians are of particular interest to us for this series of workshops.{close_quotes} Two workshops were held under this grant. The first was held in 21-24 April, 1994 and attended by 20 participants, and the second was held 16-19 November, 1995, and attended by 16 participants. In each case, there was a combination of concept lectures on the foundations of human molecular genetics; lectures by invited specialists; and laboratory experiments to introduce non-scientists to the techniques used in molecular genetics.

  8. Human Subjects Issues in AIDS Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bayer, Ronald, Ed.

    1990-01-01

    Six articles are presented on the use of human subjects in research on acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Topics include the ethics of human experimentation, female and pediatric AIDS patients, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection and AIDS among correctional inmates, community-based AIDS research, and clinical trials of HIV…

  9. Human Subjects Issues in AIDS Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bayer, Ronald, Ed.

    1990-01-01

    Six articles are presented on the use of human subjects in research on acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Topics include the ethics of human experimentation, female and pediatric AIDS patients, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection and AIDS among correctional inmates, community-based AIDS research, and clinical trials of HIV…

  10. Moving human SCNT research forward ethically.

    PubMed

    Hyun, Insoo

    2011-10-04

    A recent study of human somatic cells reprogrammed to a pluripotent state via somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) will undoubtedly renew interest in human egg procurement. Thus it is imperative that human SCNT research move forward under stringent ethical standards in locales permitting directed egg donation for stem cell research.

  11. Human Variome Project country nodes: documenting genetic information within a country.

    PubMed

    Patrinos, George P; Smith, Timothy D; Howard, Heather; Al-Mulla, Fahd; Chouchane, Lotfi; Hadjisavvas, Andreas; Hamed, Sherifa A; Li, Xi-Tao; Marafie, Makia; Ramesar, Rajkumar S; Ramos, Feliciano J; de Ravel, Thomy; El-Ruby, Mona O; Shrestha, Tilak Ram; Sobrido, María-Jesús; Tadmouri, Ghazi; Witsch-Baumgartner, Martina; Zilfalil, Bin Alwi; Auerbach, Arleen D; Carpenter, Kevin; Cutting, Garry R; Dung, Vu Chi; Grody, Wayne; Hasler, Julia; Jorde, Lynn; Kaput, Jim; Macek, Milan; Matsubara, Yoichi; Padilla, Carmancita; Robinson, Helen; Rojas-Martinez, Augusto; Taylor, Graham R; Vihinen, Mauno; Weber, Tom; Burn, John; Qi, Ming; Cotton, Richard G H; Rimoin, David

    2012-11-01

    The Human Variome Project (http://www.humanvariomeproject.org) is an international effort aiming to systematically collect and share information on all human genetic variation. The two main pillars of this effort are gene/disease-specific databases and a network of Human Variome Project Country Nodes. The latter are nationwide efforts to document the genomic variation reported within a specific population. The development and successful operation of the Human Variome Project Country Nodes are of utmost importance to the success of Human Variome Project's aims and goals because they not only allow the genetic burden of disease to be quantified in different countries, but also provide diagnosticians and researchers access to an up-to-date resource that will assist them in their daily clinical practice and biomedical research, respectively. Here, we report the discussions and recommendations that resulted from the inaugural meeting of the International Confederation of Countries Advisory Council, held on 12th December 2011, during the 2011 Human Variome Project Beijing Meeting. We discuss the steps necessary to maximize the impact of the Country Node effort for developing regional and country-specific clinical genetics resources and summarize a few well-coordinated genetic data collection initiatives that would serve as paradigms for similar projects. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Ethics, Ethical Human Research and Human Research Ethics Committees

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lindorff, Margaret

    2010-01-01

    Non-medical research involves the same issues of justice, beneficence, and respect for persons that apply to non-medical research. It also may involve risk of harm to participants, and conflicts of interest for researchers. It is therefore not possible to argue that such research should be exempt from ethical review. This paper argues that…

  13. [Progress of research on genetic engineering antibody and its application in prevention and control of parasitic diseases].

    PubMed

    Yao, Yuan; Yu, Chuan-xin

    2013-08-01

    Antibody has extensive application prospects in the biomedical field. The inherent disadvantages of traditional polyclonal antibody and monoclonal antibody limit their application values. The humanized and fragmented antibody remodeling has given a rise to a series of genetic engineered antibody variant. This paper reviews the progress of research on genetic engineering antibody and its application in prevention and control of parasitic diseases.

  14. Genetic and Epigenetic Discoveries in Human Retinoblastoma.

    PubMed

    McEvoy, Justina D; Dyer, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    Retinoblastoma is a rare pediatric cancer of the retina. Nearly all retinoblastomas are initiated through the biallelic inactivation of the retinoblastoma tumor susceptibility gene (RB1). Whole-genome sequencing has made it possible to identify secondary genetic lesions following RB1 inactivation. One of the major discoveries from retinoblastoma sequencing studies is that some retinoblastoma tumors have stable genomes. Subsequent epigenetic studies showed that changes in the epigenome contribute to the rapid progression of retinoblastoma following RB1 gene inactivation. In addition, gene amplification and elevated expression of p53 antagonists, MDM2 and MDM4, may also play an important role in retinoblastoma tumorigenesis. The knowledge gained from these recent molecular, cellular, genomic, and epigenomic analyses are now being integrated to identify new therapeutic approaches that can help save lives and vision in children with retinoblastoma, with fewer long-term side effects.

  15. Human Research Program Exploration Medical Capability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barsten, Kristina

    2010-01-01

    NASA s Human Research Program (HRP) conducts and coordinates research projects that provide human health and performance countermeasures, knowledge, technologies, and tools to enable safe, reliable, and productive human space exploration. The Program is divided into 6 major elements, which a) Provide the Program s knowledge and capabilities to conduct research, addressing the human health and performance risks. b) Advance the readiness levels of technology and countermeasures to the point of transfer to the customer programs and organizations. The National Space Biomedical Research Institute (NSBRI) is a partner with the HRP in developing a successful research program. 3

  16. Religion, spirituality, and genetics: mapping the terrain for research purposes.

    PubMed

    Churchill, Larry R

    2009-02-15

    Genetic diseases often raise issues of profound importance for human self-understanding, such as one's identity, the family or community to which one belongs, and one's future or destiny. These deeper questions have commonly been seen as the purview of religion and spirituality. This essay explores how religion and spirituality are understood in the current US context and defined in the scholarly literature over the past 100 years. It is argued that a pragmatic, functional approach to religion and spirituality is important to understanding how patients respond to genetic diagnoses and participate in genetic therapies. A pragmatic, functional approach requires broadening the inquiry to include anything that provides a framework of transcendent meaning for the fundamental existential questions of human life. This approach also entails suspending questions about the truth claims of any particular religious/spiritual belief or practice. Three implications of adopting this broad working definition will be presented. (c) 2009 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  17. The Genetics of Sun Sensitivity in Humans

    PubMed Central

    Rees, Jonathan L.

    2004-01-01

    Humans vary >100-fold in their sensitivity to the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiation. The main determinants of sensitivity are melanin pigmentation and less-well-characterized differences in skin inflammation and repair processes. Pigmentation has a high heritability, but susceptibility to cancers of the skin, a key marker of sun sensitivity, is less heritable. Despite a large number of murine coat-color mutations, only one gene in humans, the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), is known to account for substantial variation in skin and hair color and in skin cancer incidence. MC1R encodes a 317–amino acid G-coupled receptor that controls the relative amounts of the two major melanin classes, eumelanin and pheomelanin. Most persons with red hair are homozygous for alleles of the MC1R gene that show varying degrees of diminished function. More than 65 human MC1R alleles with nonsynonymous changes have been identified, and current evidence suggests that many of them vary in their physiological activity, such that a graded series of responses can be achieved on the basis of (i) dosage effects (of one or two alleles) and (ii) individual differences in the pharmacological profile in response to ligand. Thus, a single locus, identified within a Mendelian framework, can contribute significantly to human pigmentary variation. PMID:15372380

  18. Human aggression across the lifespan: genetic propensities and environmental moderators.

    PubMed

    Tuvblad, Catherine; Baker, Laura A

    2011-01-01

    This chapter reviews the recent evidence of genetic and environmental influences on human aggression. Findings from a large selection of the twin and adoption studies that have investigated the genetic and environmental architecture of aggressive behavior are summarized. These studies together show that about half (50%) of the variance in aggressive behavior is explained by genetic influences in both males and females, with the remaining 50% of the variance being explained by environmental factors not shared by family members. Form of aggression (reactive, proactive, direct/physical, indirect/relational), method of assessment (laboratory observation, self-report, ratings by parents and teachers), and age of the subjects-all seem to be significant moderators of the magnitude of genetic and environmental influences on aggressive behavior. Neither study design (twin vs. sibling adoption design) nor sex (male vs. female) seems to impact the magnitude of the genetic and environmental influences on aggression. There is also some evidence of gene-environment interaction (G × E) from both twin/adoption studies and molecular genetic studies. Various measures of family adversity and social disadvantage have been found to moderate genetic influences on aggressive behavior. Findings from these G × E studies suggest that not all individuals will be affected to the same degree by experiences and exposures, and that genetic predispositions may have different effects depending on the environment.

  19. Human Aggression Across the Lifespan: Genetic Propensities and Environmental Moderators

    PubMed Central

    Tuvblad, Catherine; Baker, Laura A.

    2013-01-01

    This chapter reviews the recent evidence of genetic and environmental influences on human aggression. Findings from a large selection of the twin and adoption studies that have investigated the genetic and environmental architecture of aggressive behavior are summarized. These studies together show that about half (50%) of the variance in aggressive behavior is explained by genetic influences in both males and females, with the remaining 50% of the variance being explained by environmental factors not shared by family members. Form of aggression (reactive, proactive, direct/physical, indirect/relational), method of assessment (laboratory observation, self-report, ratings by parents and teachers), and age of the subjects—all seem to be significant moderators of the magnitude of genetic and environmental influences on aggressive behavior. Neither study design (twin vs. sibling adoption design) nor sex (male vs. female) seems to impact the magnitude of the genetic and environmental influences on aggression. There is also some evidence of gene-environment interaction (G × E) from both twin/adoption studies and molecular genetic studies. Various measures of family adversity and social disadvantage have been found to moderate genetic influences on aggressive behavior. Findings from these G × E studies suggest that not all individuals will be affected to the same degree by experiences and exposures, and that genetic predispositions may have different effects depending on the environment. PMID:22078481

  20. Mouse forward genetics in the study of the peripheral nervous system and human peripheral neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Douglas, Darlene S.; Popko, Brian

    2009-01-01

    Forward genetics, the phenotype-driven approach to investigating gene identity and function, has a long history in mouse genetics. Random mutations in the mouse transcend bias about gene function and provide avenues towards unique discoveries. The study of the peripheral nervous system is no exception; from historical strains such as the trembler mouse, which led to the identification of PMP22 as a human disease gene causing multiple forms of peripheral neuropathy, to the more recent identification of the claw paw and sprawling mutations, forward genetics has long been a tool for probing the physiology, pathogenesis, and genetics of the PNS. Even as spontaneous and mutagenized mice continue to enable the identification of novel genes, provide allelic series for detailed functional studies, and generate models useful for clinical research, new methods, such as the piggyBac transposon, are being developed to further harness the power of forward genetics. PMID:18481175

  1. A CRISPR New World: Attitudes in the Public toward Innovations in Human Genetic Modification

    PubMed Central

    Weisberg, Steven M.; Badgio, Daniel; Chatterjee, Anjan

    2017-01-01

    The potential to genetically modify human germlines has reached a critical tipping point with recent applications of CRISPR-Cas9. Even as researchers, clinicians, and ethicists weigh the scientific and ethical repercussions of these advances, we know virtually nothing about public attitudes on the topic. Understanding such attitudes will be critical to determining the degree of broad support there might be for any public policy or regulation developed for genetic modification research. To fill this gap, we gave an online survey to a large (2,493 subjects) and diverse sample of Americans. Respondents supported genetic modification research, although demographic variables influenced these attitudes—conservatives, women, African-Americans, and older respondents, while supportive, were more cautious than liberals, men, other ethnicities, and younger respondents. Support was also was slightly muted when the risks (unanticipated mutations and possibility of eugenics) were made explicit. The information about genetic modification was also presented as contrasting vignettes, using one of five frames: genetic editing, engineering, hacking, modification, or surgery. Despite the fact that the media and academic use of frames describing the technology varies, these frames did not influence people’s attitudes. These data contribute a current snapshot of public attitudes to inform policy with regard to human genetic modification. PMID:28589120

  2. A CRISPR New World: Attitudes in the Public toward Innovations in Human Genetic Modification.

    PubMed

    Weisberg, Steven M; Badgio, Daniel; Chatterjee, Anjan

    2017-01-01

    The potential to genetically modify human germlines has reached a critical tipping point with recent applications of CRISPR-Cas9. Even as researchers, clinicians, and ethicists weigh the scientific and ethical repercussions of these advances, we know virtually nothing about public attitudes on the topic. Understanding such attitudes will be critical to determining the degree of broad support there might be for any public policy or regulation developed for genetic modification research. To fill this gap, we gave an online survey to a large (2,493 subjects) and diverse sample of Americans. Respondents supported genetic modification research, although demographic variables influenced these attitudes-conservatives, women, African-Americans, and older respondents, while supportive, were more cautious than liberals, men, other ethnicities, and younger respondents. Support was also was slightly muted when the risks (unanticipated mutations and possibility of eugenics) were made explicit. The information about genetic modification was also presented as contrasting vignettes, using one of five frames: genetic editing, engineering, hacking, modification, or surgery. Despite the fact that the media and academic use of frames describing the technology varies, these frames did not influence people's attitudes. These data contribute a current snapshot of public attitudes to inform policy with regard to human genetic modification.

  3. Contextualising merit and integrity within human research.

    PubMed

    Pieper, Ian; Thomson, Colin J H

    2011-09-01

    The first consideration of any Australian Human Research Ethics Committee should be to satisfy itself that the project before them is worth undertaking. If the project does not add to the body of knowledge, if it does not improve social welfare or individual wellbeing then the use of human participants, their tissue or their data must be questioned. Sometimes, however, committees are criticised for appearing to adopt the role of scientific review committees. The intent of this paper is to provide researchers with an understanding of the ethical importance of demonstrating the merit of their research project and to help them develop protocols that show ethics committees that adequate attention has been paid to this central tenet in dealing ethically with human research participants. Any person proposing human research must be prepared to show that it is worthwhile. This paper will clarify the relationship between research merit and integrity, research ethics and the responsibilities of human research ethics committees.

  4. The role of social networking sites in medical genetics research.

    PubMed

    Reaves, Allison Cook; Bianchi, Diana W

    2013-05-01

    Social networking sites (SNS) have potential value in the field of medical genetics as a means of research subject recruitment and source of data. This article examines the current role of SNS in medical genetics research and potential applications for these sites in future studies. Facebook is the primary SNS considered, given the prevalence of its use in the United States and role in a small but growing number of studies. To date, utilization of SNS in medical genetics research has been primarily limited to three studies that recruited subjects from populations of Facebook users [McGuire et al. (2009); Am J Bioeth 9: 3-10; Janvier et al. (2012); Pediatrics 130: 293-298; Leighton et al. (2012); Public Health Genomics 15: 11-21]. These studies and a number of other medical and public health studies that have used Facebook as a context for recruiting research subjects are discussed. Approaches for Facebook-based subject recruitment are identified, including paid Facebook advertising, snowball sampling, targeted searching and posting. The use of these methods in medical genetics research has the potential to facilitate cost-effective research on both large, heterogeneous populations and small, hard-to-access sub-populations.

  5. AFRICAN GENETIC DIVERSITY: Implications for Human Demographic History, Modern Human Origins, and Complex Disease Mapping

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Michael C.; Tishkoff, Sarah A.

    2010-01-01

    Comparative studies of ethnically diverse human populations, particularly in Africa, are important for reconstructing human evolutionary history and for understanding the genetic basis of phenotypic adaptation and complex disease. African populations are characterized by greater levels of genetic diversity, extensive population substructure, and less linkage disequilibrium (LD) among loci compared to non-African populations. Africans also possess a number of genetic adaptations that have evolved in response to diverse climates and diets, as well as exposure to infectious disease. This review summarizes patterns and the evolutionary origins of genetic diversity present in African populations, as well as their implications for the mapping of complex traits, including disease susceptibility. PMID:18593304

  6. [Human genetic data from a data protection law perspective].

    PubMed

    Schulte In den Bäumen, Tobias

    2007-02-01

    The collection and use of genetic data have caused much concern in the German population. Data protection is widely seen as the tool to address these fears. The term genetic data is not self-explanatory, as it depends on the different types of genetic diseases. The protection of genetic data as defined with regard to the different sets of diseases needs to fit into the preexisting data protection legislation. Still, the particularities of genetic data such as the multipersonal impact need to be considered. A balance between the information needs of society and the right to privacy requires a medically driven criteria. The medical term of indication which corresponds with the data protection term of purpose should serve as a tool in order to balance the rights of the patients and their relatives or between clients and third persons involved. Some countries have set up new legislative acts to address the challenges of human genetics. The current state of German data protection law leaves citizen rather unprotected as long as the data are used for medical purposes in a wider sense. A special law on the collection of genetic data has been discussed for several years, but it should be questioned whether the scope of a sector-specific law would serve citizens better. It seems to be preferable to adjust the existing Data Protection Act rather than drafting a specific law which covers the field of human genetics. This adaptation should reflect upon the different technical ways in which genetic data are collected and used.

  7. The Nazi symbiosis: politics and human genetics at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute.

    PubMed

    Berez, Thomas M; Weiss, Sheila Faith

    2004-12-01

    The case of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Anthropology, Human Heredity and Eugenics (KWIA), from its inception in Weimar Republic Germany to its apogee under the rule of the Third Reich, is an example of how politics and human heredity can function as mutually beneficial resources. Whether it was a result of the Nazi bureaucrats' desire to legitimize their racial policy through science, or the KWIA personnel's desire to secure more funding for their research, the symbiotic relationship that developed between human genetics and Nazi politics could help explain why many scientists in the Third Reich undertook research projects that wholly transgressed the boundaries of morally acceptable science.

  8. Research Needs for Human Factors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Army Research Inst. for the Behavioral and Social Sciences, Arlington, VA.

    Human factors engineering can be defined as the application of scientific principles, methods, and data drawn from a variety of disciplines to the development of engineering systems in which people play a significant role. Since human factors issues arise in every domain in which humans interact with the products of a technological society, six…

  9. Human Research Program Integrated Research Plan. Revision A January 2009

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2009-01-01

    The Integrated Research Plan (IRP) describes the portfolio of Human Research Program (HRP) research and technology tasks. The IRP is the HRP strategic and tactical plan for research necessary to meet HRP requirements. The need to produce an IRP is established in HRP-47052, Human Research Program - Program Plan, and is under configuration management control of the Human Research Program Control Board (HRPCB). Crew health and performance is critical to successful human exploration beyond low Earth orbit. The Human Research Program (HRP) is essential to enabling extended periods of space exploration because it provides knowledge and tools to mitigate risks to human health and performance. Risks include physiological and behavioral effects from radiation and hypogravity environments, as well as unique challenges in medical support, human factors, and behavioral or psychological factors. The Human Research Program (HRP) delivers human health and performance countermeasures, knowledge, technologies and tools to enable safe, reliable, and productive human space exploration. Without HRP results, NASA will face unknown and unacceptable risks for mission success and post-mission crew health. This Integrated Research Plan (IRP) describes HRP s approach and research activities that are intended to address the needs of human space exploration and serve HRP customers and how they are integrated to provide a risk mitigation tool. The scope of the IRP is limited to the activities that can be conducted with the resources available to the HRP; it does not contain activities that would be performed if additional resources were available. The timescale of human space exploration is envisioned to take many decades. The IRP illustrates the program s research plan through the timescale of early lunar missions of extended duration.

  10. Governing the postmortem procurement of human body material for research.

    PubMed

    Van Assche, Kristof; Capitaine, Laura; Pennings, Guido; Sterckx, Sigrid

    2015-03-01

    Human body material removed post mortem is a particularly valuable resource for research. Considering the efforts that are currently being made to study the biochemical processes and possible genetic causes that underlie cancer and cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, it is likely that this type of research will continue to gain in importance. However, post mortem procurement of human body material for research raises specific ethical concerns, more in particular with regard to the consent of the research participant. In this paper, we attempt to determine which consent regime should govern the post mortem procurement of body material for research. In order to do so, we assess the various arguments that could be put forward in support of a duty to make body material available for research purposes after death. We argue that this duty does in practice not support conscription but is sufficiently strong to defend a policy of presumed rather than explicit consent.

  11. Genetic Variation in an Individual Human Exome

    PubMed Central

    Ng, Pauline C.; Levy, Samuel; Huang, Jiaqi; Stockwell, Timothy B.; Walenz, Brian P.; Li, Kelvin; Axelrod, Nelson; Busam, Dana A.; Strausberg, Robert L.; Venter, J. Craig

    2008-01-01

    There is much interest in characterizing the variation in a human individual, because this may elucidate what contributes significantly to a person's phenotype, thereby enabling personalized genomics. We focus here on the variants in a person's ‘exome,’ which is the set of exons in a genome, because the exome is believed to harbor much of the functional variation. We provide an analysis of the ∼12,500 variants that affect the protein coding portion of an individual's genome. We identified ∼10,400 nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (nsSNPs) in this individual, of which ∼15–20% are rare in the human population. We predict ∼1,500 nsSNPs affect protein function and these tend be heterozygous, rare, or novel. Of the ∼700 coding indels, approximately half tend to have lengths that are a multiple of three, which causes insertions/deletions of amino acids in the corresponding protein, rather than introducing frameshifts. Coding indels also occur frequently at the termini of genes, so even if an indel causes a frameshift, an alternative start or stop site in the gene can still be used to make a functional protein. In summary, we reduced the set of ∼12,500 nonsilent coding variants by ∼8-fold to a set of variants that are most likely to have major effects on their proteins' functions. This is our first glimpse of an individual's exome and a snapshot of the current state of personalized genomics. The majority of coding variants in this individual are common and appear to be functionally neutral. Our results also indicate that some variants can be used to improve the current NCBI human reference genome. As more genomes are sequenced, many rare variants and non-SNP variants will be discovered. We present an approach to analyze the coding variation in humans by proposing multiple bioinformatic methods to hone in on possible functional variation. PMID:18704161

  12. Genetic variation in an individual human exome.

    PubMed

    Ng, Pauline C; Levy, Samuel; Huang, Jiaqi; Stockwell, Timothy B; Walenz, Brian P; Li, Kelvin; Axelrod, Nelson; Busam, Dana A; Strausberg, Robert L; Venter, J Craig

    2008-08-15

    There is much interest in characterizing the variation in a human individual, because this may elucidate what contributes significantly to a person's phenotype, thereby enabling personalized genomics. We focus here on the variants in a person's 'exome,' which is the set of exons in a genome, because the exome is believed to harbor much of the functional variation. We provide an analysis of the approximately 12,500 variants that affect the protein coding portion of an individual's genome. We identified approximately 10,400 nonsynonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms (nsSNPs) in this individual, of which approximately 15-20% are rare in the human population. We predict approximately 1,500 nsSNPs affect protein function and these tend be heterozygous, rare, or novel. Of the approximately 700 coding indels, approximately half tend to have lengths that are a multiple of three, which causes insertions/deletions of amino acids in the corresponding protein, rather than introducing frameshifts. Coding indels also occur frequently at the termini of genes, so even if an indel causes a frameshift, an alternative start or stop site in the gene can still be used to make a functional protein. In summary, we reduced the set of approximately 12,500 nonsilent coding variants by approximately 8-fold to a set of variants that are most likely to have major effects on their proteins' functions. This is our first glimpse of an individual's exome and a snapshot of the current state of personalized genomics. The majority of coding variants in this individual are common and appear to be functionally neutral. Our results also indicate that some variants can be used to improve the current NCBI human reference genome. As more genomes are sequenced, many rare variants and non-SNP variants will be discovered. We present an approach to analyze the coding variation in humans by proposing multiple bioinformatic methods to hone in on possible functional variation.

  13. Human genetic banking: altruism, benefit and consent.

    PubMed

    Williams, Garrath; Schroeder, Doris

    2004-04-01

    This article considers how we should frame the ethical issues raised by current proposals for large-scale genebanks with on-going links to medical and lifestyle data, such as the Wellcome Trust and Medical Research Council's 'UK Biobank'. As recent scandals such as Alder Hey have emphasised, there are complex issues concerning the informed consent of donors that need to be carefully considered. However, we believe that a preoccupation with informed consent obscures important questions about the purposes to which such collections are put, not least that they may be only haphazardly used for research (especially that of commercial interest)--an end that would not fairly reflect the original altruistic motivation of donors, and the trust they must invest. We therefore argue that custodians of such databases take on a weighty pro-active duty, to encourage public debate about the ends of such collections and to sponsor research that reflects publicly agreed priorities and provides public benefits.

  14. [The development of molecular human genetics and its significance for perspectives of modern medicine].

    PubMed

    Coutelle, C; Speer, A; Grade, K; Rosenthal, A; Hunger, H D

    1989-01-01

    The introduction of molecular human genetics has become a paradigma for the application of genetic engineering in medicine. The main principles of this technology are the isolation of molecular probes, their application in hybridization reactions, specific gene-amplification by the polymerase chain reaction, and DNA sequencing reactions. These methods are used for the analysis of monogenic diseases by linkage studies and the elucidation of the molecular defect causing these conditions, respectively. They are also the basis for genomic diagnosis of monogenic diseases, introduced into the health care system of the GDR by a national project on Duchenne/Becker muscular dystrophy, Cystic Fibrosis and Phenylketonuria. The rapid development of basic research on the molecular analysis of the human genome and genomic diagnosis indicates, that human molecular genetics is becoming a decisive basic discipline of modern medicine.

  15. GENETIC STUDY OF HUMAN CELLS IN VITRO

    PubMed Central

    Chang, R. Shihman

    1960-01-01

    The isolation of carbohydrate variants from cultures of HeLa and conjunctival cells was described. Factors inherent in the cell culture system, such as parent populations and dialyzed serums, have been shown to influence the outcome of variant isolations. Established stable variants incorporated significantly more pentoses or lactate into various cell fractions than the parent cultures. Besides their abilities to propagate continuously in the selecting environments, the variants multiplied slower, were more susceptible to sub-zero preservation and the cytotoxic effect of D-2-deoxyglucose, showed lower cloning efficiencies and were less susceptible to the deleterious effect of glucose oxidase. The ribose variants also differed from the parent cultures in morphological appearance such as formation of multinucleated cells and ring-shaped colonies. They converted more ribose into other component sugars of mucopolysaccharides than the parent cultures. Preliminary analyses of the mucopolysaccharides extracted from the ribose variants and parent cultures showed large difference in their carbohydrate (Molisch-positive materials) and DNA ratios. Evidence suggests that a sequence of interrelated events from genetic selection to primitive morphogenesis has been established. PMID:13692337

  16. Unraveling the Genetics of Human Obesity

    PubMed Central

    Mutch, David M; Clément, Karine

    2006-01-01

    The use of modern molecular biology tools in deciphering the perturbed biochemistry and physiology underlying the obese state has proven invaluable. Identifying the hypothalamic leptin/melanocortin pathway as critical in many cases of monogenic obesity has permitted targeted, hypothesis-driven experiments to be performed, and has implicated new candidates as causative for previously uncharacterized clinical cases of obesity. Meanwhile, the effects of mutations in the melanocortin-4 receptor gene, for which the obese phenotype varies in the degree of severity among individuals, are now thought to be influenced by one's environmental surroundings. Molecular approaches have revealed that syndromes (Prader-Willi and Bardet-Biedl) previously assumed to be controlled by a single gene are, conversely, regulated by multiple elements. Finally, the application of comprehensive profiling technologies coupled with creative statistical analyses has revealed that interactions between genetic and environmental factors are responsible for the common obesity currently challenging many Westernized societies. As such, an improved understanding of the different “types” of obesity not only permits the development of potential therapies, but also proposes novel and often unexpected directions in deciphering the dysfunctional state of obesity. PMID:17196040

  17. Simple genetics language as source of miscommunication between genetics researchers and potential research participants in informed consent documents.

    PubMed

    Morgenstern, Justin; Hegele, Robert A; Nisker, Jeff

    2015-08-01

    Informed consent is based on communication, requiring language to convey meanings and ensure understandings. The purpose of this study was to investigate the use of language in informed consent documents used in the genetics research funded by Canadian Institutes of Health Research and Genome Canada. Consent documents were requested from the principal investigators in a recent round of funding. A qualitative content analysis was performed, supported by NVivo7™. Potential barriers to informed consent were identified, including language that was vague and variable, words with both technical and common meanings, novel phrases without clear meaning, a lack of definitions, and common concepts that assume new definitions in genetics research. However, we noted that difficulties in comprehension were often obscured because the words used were generally simple and familiar. We conclude that language gaps between researcher and potential research participants may unintentionally impair comprehension and ultimately impair informed consent in genomics research. © The Author(s) 2014.

  18. Fine-scaled human genetic structure revealed by SNP microarrays.

    PubMed

    Xing, Jinchuan; Watkins, W Scott; Witherspoon, David J; Zhang, Yuhua; Guthery, Stephen L; Thara, Rangaswamy; Mowry, Bryan J; Bulayeva, Kazima; Weiss, Robert B; Jorde, Lynn B

    2009-05-01

    We report an analysis of more than 240,000 loci genotyped using the Affymetrix SNP microarray in 554 individuals from 27 worldwide populations in Africa, Asia, and Europe. To provide a more extensive and complete sampling of human genetic variation, we have included caste and tribal samples from two states in South India, Daghestanis from eastern Europe, and the Iban from Malaysia. Consistent with observations made by Charles Darwin, our results highlight shared variation among human populations and demonstrate that much genetic variation is geographically continuous. At the same time, principal components analyses reveal discernible genetic differentiation among almost all identified populations in our sample, and in most cases, individuals can be clearly assigned to defined populations on the basis of SNP genotypes. All individuals are accurately classified into continental groups using a model-based clustering algorithm, but between closely related populations, genetic and self-classifications conflict for some individuals. The 250K data permitted high-level resolution of genetic variation among Indian caste and tribal populations and between highland and lowland Daghestani populations. In particular, upper-caste individuals from Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh form one defined group, lower-caste individuals from these two states form another, and the tribal Irula samples form a third. Our results emphasize the correlation of genetic and geographic distances and highlight other elements, including social factors that have contributed to population structure.

  19. Molecular genetics of human obesity: A comprehensive review.

    PubMed

    Singh, Rajan Kumar; Kumar, Permendra; Mahalingam, Kulandaivelu

    2017-02-01

    Obesity and its related health complications is a major problem worldwide. Hypothalamus and their signalling molecules play a critical role in the intervening and coordination with energy balance and homeostasis. Genetic factors play a crucial role in determining an individual's predisposition to the weight gain and being obese. In the past few years, several genetic variants were identified as monogenic forms of human obesity having success over common polygenic forms. In the context of molecular genetics, genome-wide association studies (GWAS) approach and their findings signified a number of genetic variants predisposing to obesity. However, the last couple of years, it has also been noticed that alterations in the environmental and epigenetic factors are one of the key causes of obesity. Hence, this review might be helpful in the current scenario of molecular genetics of human obesity, obesity-related health complications (ORHC), and energy homeostasis. Future work based on the clinical discoveries may play a role in the molecular dissection of genetic approaches to find more obesity-susceptible gene loci. Copyright © 2016 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  20. Genetic studies on the Cayo Santiago rhesus macaques: A review of 40 years of research.

    PubMed

    Widdig, Anja; Kessler, Matthew J; Bercovitch, Fred B; Berard, John D; Duggleby, Christine; Nürnberg, Peter; Rawlins, Richard G; Sauermann, Ulrike; Wang, Qian; Krawczak, Michael; Schmidtke, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    Genetic studies not only contribute substantially to our current understanding of the natural variation in behavior and health in many species, they also provide the basis of numerous in vivo models of human traits. Despite the many challenges posed by the high level of biological and social complexity, a long lifespan and difficult access in the field, genetic studies of primates are particularly rewarding because of the close evolutionary relatedness of these species to humans. The free-ranging rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta) population on Cayo Santiago (CS), Puerto Rico, provides a unique resource in this respect because several of the abovementioned caveats are of either minor importance there, or lacking altogether, thereby allowing long-term genetic research in a primate population under constant surveillance since 1956. This review summarizes more than 40 years of genetic research carried out on CS, from early blood group typing and the genetic characterization of skeletal material via population-wide paternity testing with DNA fingerprints and short tandem repeats (STRs) to the analysis of the highly polymorphic DQB1 locus within the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). The results of the paternity studies also facilitated subsequent studies of male dominance and other factors influencing male reproductive success, of male reproductive skew, paternal kin bias, and mechanisms of paternal kin recognition. More recently, the CS macaques have been the subjects of functional genetic and gene expression analyses and have played an important role in behavioral and quantitative genetic studies. In addition, the CS colony has been used as a natural model for human adult-onset macular degeneration, glaucoma, and circadian rhythm disorder. Our review finishes off with a discussion of potential future directions of research on CS, including the transition from STRs to single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) typing and whole genome sequencing.

  1. Human Papillomavirus 18 Genetic Variation and Cervical Cancer Risk Worldwide

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Alyce A.; Gheit, Tarik; Franceschi, Silvia

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Human papillomavirus 18 (HPV18) is the second most carcinogenic HPV type, after HPV16, and it accounts for approximately 12% of squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) as well as 37% of adenocarcinoma (ADC) of the cervix worldwide. We aimed to evaluate the worldwide diversity and carcinogenicity of HPV18 genetic variants by sequencing the entire long control region (LCR) and the E6 open reading frame of 711 HPV18-positive cervical samples from 39 countries, taking advantage of the International Agency for Research on Cancer biobank. A total of 209 unique HPV18 sequence variants were identified that formed three phylogenetic lineages (A, B, and C). A and B lineages each divided into four sublineages, including a newly identified candidate B4 sublineage. The distribution of lineages varied by geographical region, with B and C lineages found principally in Africa. HPV18 (sub)lineages were compared between 453 cancer cases and 236 controls, as well as between 81 ADC and 160 matched SCC cases. In region-stratified analyses, there were no significant differences in the distribution of HPV18 variant lineages between cervical cancer cases and controls or between ADC and SCC. In conclusion, our findings do not support the role of HPV18 (sub)lineages for discriminating cancer risk or explaining why HPV18 is more strongly linked with ADC than SCC. IMPORTANCE This is the largest and most geographically/ethnically diverse study of the genetic variation of HPV18 to date, providing a comprehensive reference for phylogenetic classification of HPV18 sublineages for epidemiological and biological studies. PMID:26269181

  2. Psychiatric genetic research at the National Institute of Mental Health

    SciTech Connect

    Berg, K.; Mullican, C.; Maestri, N.

    1994-12-15

    For some time it has been known through the results of family, twin, and adoption studies that hereditary appears to play a significant casual role in many mental disorders, including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other mood disorders, Alzheimer`s Disease, panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, autism, dyslexia, and Tourette`s syndrome. The precise patterns of inheritance of these complex disorders have not been determined, nor have the relevant genes been localized or cloned. Because the genetics are complex and because there is also clearly an environmental contribution to behavior, we expect the analysis of the genetics of mental illness to be arduous and not quickly resolved. There are several compelling reasons to continue to focus our attention on uncovering the genetic factors for severe mental illness. Prominent among these are the implications for better treatment of mental disorders. The National Institute of Mental Health supports a wide range of studies on psychiatric genetic research. 16 refs.

  3. The role of genetically-engineered pigs in xenotransplantation research

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, David K.C.; Ekser, Burcin; Ramsoondar, Jagdeece; Phelps, Carol; Ayares, David

    2015-01-01

    There is a critical shortage in the number of deceased human organs that become available for purposes of clinical transplantation. This problem might be resolved by the transplantation or organs from pigs genetically-engineered to protect them from the human immune response. The pathobiological barriers to successful pig organ transplantation in primates include activation of the innate and adaptive immune systems, coagulation dysregulation, and inflammation. Genetic engineering of the pig as an organ source has increased the survival of the transplanted pig heart, kidney, islet and corneal graft in nonhuman primates (NHP) from minutes to months or occasionally years. Genetic engineering may also contribute to any physiological barriers that might be identified as well as to reducing the risks of transfer of a potentially infectious micro-organism with the organ. There are now an estimated 40 or more genetic alterations that have been carried out in pigs, with some pigs expressing 5 or 6 manipulations. With the new technology now available, it will become increasingly common for a pig to express even more genetic manipulations, and these could be tested in the pig-to-NHP models to assess their efficacy and benefit. It is therefore likely that clinical trials of pig kidney, heart, and islet transplantation will become feasible in the near future. PMID:26365762

  4. Using non-human primates to benefit humans: research and organ transplantation.

    PubMed

    Shaw, David; Dondorp, Wybo; de Wert, Guido

    2014-11-01

    Emerging biotechnology may soon allow the creation of genetically human organs inside animals, with non-human primates (henceforth simply "primates") and pigs being the best candidate species. This prospect raises the question of whether creating organs in primates in order to then transplant them into humans would be more (or less) acceptable than using them for research. In this paper, we examine the validity of the purported moral distinction between primates and other animals, and analyze the ethical acceptability of using primates to create organs for human use.

  5. Genetic alterations by human papillomaviruses in oncogenesis.

    PubMed

    Lazo, P A; Gallego, M I; Ballester, S; Feduchi, E

    1992-03-30

    The integration sites in the cellular genome of human papillomavirus are located in chromosomal regions always associated with oncogenes or other known tumor phenotypes. Two regions, 8q24 and 12q13, are common to several cases of cervical carcinoma and can have integrated more than one type of papillomavirus DNA. These two chromosomal regions contain several genes implicated in oncogenesis. These observations strongly imply that viral integration sites of DNA tumor viruses can be used as the access point to chromosomal regions where genes implicated in the tumor phenotype are located, a situation similar to that of non-transforming retroviruses.

  6. Incidental findings in genetics research using archived DNA.

    PubMed

    Clayton, Ellen Wright

    2008-01-01

    Despite calls by some commentators for disclosing incidental findings in genetics research, several factors weigh in favor of caution. The technology of genetics has the power to uncover a vast array of information. The most potent argument for restraint in disclosure is that much research is pursued without consent so that the individual participant may not know that research is being conducted at all. Often the work is done by investigators and at institutions with which the person has no prior contact. Past practice is also relevant; genetics researchers historically have chosen not to disclose incidental findings, of which misattributed paternity and pleiotropic alleles such as ApoE have been the most common. Many people choose not to have genetic tests when given a choice. It may be desirable to discuss the topic of incidental findings when consent for research is obtained, but given the risk of unwanted surprise when there has been no prior discussion, the potential utility of incidental findings should be very high before they are even offered to individuals.

  7. Can Research on the Genetics of Intelligence Be "Socially Neutral"?

    PubMed

    Roberts, Dorothy

    2015-01-01

    The history of research on the genetics of intelligence is fraught with social bias. During the eugenics era, the hereditary theory of intelligence justified policies that encouraged the proliferation of favored races and coercively stemmed procreation by disfavored ones. In the 1970s, Berkeley psychologist Arthur Jensen argued that black students' innate cognitive inferiority limited the efficacy of federal education programs. The 1994 controversial bestseller The Bell Curve, by Richard J. Herrnstein and Charles Murray, rehashed the claim that race and class disparities stem from immutable differences in inherited intelligence, which could not be eliminated through social interventions. Today most scientists studying the genetics of intelligence distance themselves from this history of social bias by arguing that their research need not investigate intellectual differences between social groups. Rather, they argue, examining the heritability of intelligence can be socially neutral and may even help to reduce social inequities. I argue, however, that research on the genetics of intelligence cannot be socially neutral. Even if we divorce the heritability of intelligence from a eugenicist mission, measuring intelligence remains useful only as a gage of individuals' appropriate positions in society. Research into the genetics of intelligence ultimately helps to determine individuals' inherited capacity for particular social positions, even when researchers aim to modify the effects of inheritance. © 2015 The Hastings Center.

  8. Needed Research on the Genes and Environment in Human Psychological Development: Perspectives from Behavior Genetics. A Special Report of the USOE-Sponsored Grant Study: Critical Appraisal of Research in the Personality-Emotions-Motivation Domain.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loehlin, John C.; And Others

    The task group report presented in this publication is one of a series prepared by eminent psychologists who have served as consultants in the U.S.O.E.-sponsored grant study to conduct a Critical Appraisal of the Personality-Emotions-Motivation Domain. In order to attain the goal of identifying important problems and areas for new research and…

  9. The future of genetic research in exercise science and sports medicine.

    PubMed

    Trent, Ronald J; Yu, Bing

    2009-01-01

    Genetic research is used to identify the relative contributions made by inherent abilities (nature) versus environmental effects (nurture) in human performance. The same approach allows a better understanding of how injuries or illnesses can result from sport or physical activity. Having identified the genes involved in athletic performance, there are the intriguing possibilities of using this information for talent search, developing individualized training programs and prevention of sports-related injuries. There are many interacting genes involved in athletic performance. This class of genes is often described as 'complex' and the mode of inheritance is called 'multifactorial'. Discovery of these genes is difficult using the conventional case control (association) studies. Recent genomic-based developments allowing high throughput SNP analysis are very promising. Potentially more exciting is the availability in the near future of cheaper and faster whole-genome sequencing technologies. Genetic research in exercise science has produced a lot of data including the ability to draw a human exercise gene map. However, progress at the genetic level has been slow because gene-based association studies are not powerful enough to detect multiple small but cumulative gene effects. In future, the more efficient genomic-based research approaches will accelerate the finding of 'sports genes'. Data generated will be enormous, making it essential to have a direct link between the laboratory researcher and bioinformatics expertise. Genetics research has moved to the genomics era, i.e. the simultaneous testing of multiple genes is now possible. 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel

  10. Human germline genetic modification: scientific and bioethical perspectives.

    PubMed

    Smith, Kevin R; Chan, Sarah; Harris, John

    2012-10-01

    The latest mammalian genetic modification technology offers efficient and reliable targeting of genomic sequences, in the guise of designer genetic recombination tools. These and other improvements in genetic engineering technology suggest that human germline genetic modification (HGGM) will become a safe and effective prospect in the relatively near future. Several substantive ethical objections have been raised against HGGM including claims of unacceptably high levels of risk, damage to the status of future persons, and violations of justice and autonomy. This paper critically reviews the latest GM science and discusses the key ethical objections to HGGM. We conclude that major benefits are likely to accrue through the use of safe and effective HGGM and that it would thus be unethical to take a precautionary stance against HGGM.

  11. Human cytomegalovirus: bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) cloning and genetic manipulation.

    PubMed

    Paredes, Anne M; Yu, Dong

    2012-02-01

    The understanding of human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) biology was long hindered by the inability to perform efficient viral genetic analysis. This hurdle was recently overcome when the genomes of multiple HCMV strains were cloned as infectious bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs). The BAC system takes advantage of the single-copy F plasmid of E. coli that can stably carry large pieces of foreign DNA. In this system, a recombinant HCMV virus carrying a modified F plasmid is first generated in eukaryotic cells. Recombinant viral genomes are then isolated and recovered in E. coli as BAC clones. BAC-captured viral genomes can be manipulated using prokaryotic genetics, and recombinant virus can be reconstituted from BAC transfection in eukaryotic cells. The BAC reverse genetic system provides a reliable and efficient method to introduce genetic alterations into the viral genome in E.coli and subsequently analyze their effects on virus biology in eukaryotic cells.

  12. Therapeutic Targets of Triglyceride Metabolism as Informed by Human Genetics.

    PubMed

    Bauer, Robert C; Khetarpal, Sumeet A; Hand, Nicholas J; Rader, Daniel J

    2016-04-01

    Human genetics has contributed to the development of multiple drugs to treat hyperlipidemia and coronary artery disease (CAD), most recently including antibodies targeting PCSK9 to reduce LDL cholesterol. Despite these successes, a large burden of CAD remains. Genetic and epidemiological studies have suggested that circulating triglyceride (TG)-rich lipoproteins (TRLs) are a causal risk factor for CAD, presenting an opportunity for novel therapeutic strategies. We discuss recent unbiased human genetics testing, including genome-wide association studies (GWAS) and whole-genome or -exome sequencing, that have identified the lipoprotein lipase (LPL) and hepatic lipogenesis pathways as important mechanisms in the regulation of circulating TRLs. Further strengthening the causal relationship between TRLs and CAD, findings such as these may provide novel targets for much-needed potential therapeutic interventions. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Mining and modeling human genetics for autism therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Smith, Daniel G; Ehlers, Michael D

    2012-10-01

    A growing understanding of the genetic origins of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and the impact of ASD risk genes on synaptic function presents new opportunities for drug discovery. Large-scale human genetics studies have begun to reveal molecular pathways and potential therapeutic drug targets. Subsequent validation and characterization of ASD risk genes in mouse models holds promise for defining relevant cellular mechanisms and brain circuits associated with the core behavioral symptoms of autism. Here we review recent advances in the molecular therapeutics in ASDs and discuss opportunities and obstacles for converting emerging biology into new medicines. We present emerging concepts on the impact of risk genes during development and adulthood that define points of intervention. We further highlight ongoing clinical trials in patients with syndromic forms of autism. These clinical studies will be an important test of the utility of human genetics as a starting point for drug discovery in ASDs.

  14. Genetic variation and the de novo assembly of human genomes

    PubMed Central

    Chaisson, Mark J. P.; Wilson, Richard K.; Eichler, Evan E.

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of genetic variation and the assembly of genome sequences are both inextricably linked to advances in DNA-sequencing technology. Short-read massively parallel sequencing has revolutionized our ability to discover genetic variation but is insufficient to generate high-quality genome assemblies or resolve most structural variation. Full resolution of variation is only guaranteed by complete de novo assembly of a genome. Here, we review approaches to genome assembly, the nature of gaps or missing sequences, and biases in the assembly process. We describe the challenges of generating a complete de novo genome assembly using current technologies and the impact that being able to perfectly sequence the genome would have on understanding human disease and evolution. Finally, we summarize recent technological advances that improve both contiguity and accuracy and emphasize the importance of complete de novo assembly as opposed to read mapping as the primary means to understanding the full range of human genetic variation. PMID:26442640

  15. Strong genetic control of emergence of human primary incisors.

    PubMed

    Hughes, T E; Bockmann, M R; Seow, K; Gotjamanos, T; Gully, N; Richards, L C; Townsend, G C

    2007-12-01

    Our understanding of tooth eruption in humans remains incomplete. We hypothesized that genetic factors contribute significantly to phenotypic variation in the emergence of primary incisors. We applied model-fitting to data from Australian twins to quantify contributions of genetic and environmental factors to variation in timing of the emergence of human primary incisors. There were no significant differences in incisor emergence times between zygosity groups or sexes. Emergence times of maxillary central incisors and mandibular lateral incisors were less variable than those of maxillary lateral incisors and mandibular central incisors. Maxillary lateral incisors displayed significant directional asymmetry, the left side emerging earlier than the right. Variation in timing of the emergence of the primary incisors was under strong genetic control, with a small but significant contribution from the external environment. Estimates of narrow-sense heritability ranged from 82 to 94% in males and 71 to 96% in females.

  16. Online Discussion Effects on Intention to Participate in Genetic Research: A Longitudinal Experimental Study

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Sojung Claire; Cappella, Joseph N.; Price, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    Objective The National Human Genome Research Institute has emphasized community engagement and public dialogue in the U. S. on issues related to genetics. This study examines how online discussions among the U.S. public directly or indirectly influence psychosocial constructs of the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB), including intention to take part in genetic research. Design After completing the baseline questionnaire, participants (n = 3,754) were randomly assigned to one of the following three groups: the discussion group, the pre/post only group, and the End-Of-Project group. The discussion group (n = 1,824) was invited and participated in up to three online discussions, which were held from November 2008 to May 2009. Main Outcome Measures Behavioral intention, beliefs, attitudes, subjective norm, and perceived behavioral control variables were assessed. Results The most interesting finding was that those participating in online discussions had fewer negative beliefs about volunteering for genetic research, which in turn, contributed to more positive attitudes, increased injunctive and descriptive norms, and enhanced behavioral control. These relationships, then, were associated with higher intention to participate in genetic research. Conclusion These findings suggest that continuous public discussions seem to positively affect volunteer intention for genetic research through ameliorating fears of negative consequences. PMID:26979570

  17. Online discussion effects on intention to participate in genetic research: A longitudinal experimental study.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sojung Claire; Cappella, Joseph N; Price, Vincent

    2016-09-01

    The National Human Genome Research Institute has emphasised community engagement and public dialogue in the U.S. on issues related to genetics. This study examines how online discussions among the U.S. public directly or indirectly influence psychosocial constructs of the Theory of Planned Behavior, including intention to take part in genetic research. After completing the baseline questionnaire, participants (n = 3754) were randomly assigned to one of the following three groups: the discussion group, the pre-/post-only group and the End-of-Project group. The discussion group (n = 1824) was invited and participated in up to three online discussions, which were held from November 2008 to May 2009. Behavioural intention, beliefs, attitudes, subjective norm and perceived behavioural control variables were assessed. The most interesting finding was that those participating in online discussions had fewer negative beliefs about volunteering for genetic research, which in turn contributed to more positive attitudes, increased injunctive and descriptive norms and enhanced behavioural control. These relationships, then, were associated with higher intention to participate in genetic research. These findings suggest that continuous public discussions seem to positively affect volunteer intention for genetic research through ameliorating fears of negative consequences.

  18. Genetic variation in lipid desaturases and its impact on the development of human disease

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Perturbations in lipid metabolism characterize many of the chronic diseases currently plaguing our society, such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. Thus interventions that target plasma lipid levels remain a primary goal to manage these diseases. The determinants of plasma lipid levels are multi-factorial, consisting of both genetic and lifestyle components. Recent evidence indicates that fatty acid desaturases have an important role in defining plasma and tissue lipid profiles. This review will highlight the current state-of-knowledge regarding three desaturases (Scd-1, Fads1 and Fads2) and their potential roles in disease onset and development. Although research in rodent models has provided invaluable insight into the regulation and functions of these desaturases, the extent to which murine research can be translated to humans remains unclear. Evidence emerging from human-based research demonstrates that genetic variation in human desaturase genes affects enzyme activity and, consequently, disease risk factors. Moreover, this genetic variation may have a trans-generational effect via breastfeeding. Therefore inter-individual variation in desaturase function is attributed to both genetic and lifestyle components. As such, population-based research regarding the role of desaturases on disease risk is challenged by this complex gene-lifestyle paradigm. Unravelling the contribution of each component is paramount for understanding the inter-individual variation that exists in plasma lipid profiles, and will provide crucial information to develop personalized strategies to improve health management. PMID:20565855

  19. Three autism candidate genes: a synthesis of human genetic analysis with other disciplines.

    PubMed

    Bartlett, Christopher W; Gharani, Neda; Millonig, James H; Brzustowicz, Linda M

    2005-01-01

    Autism is a particularly complex disorder when considered from virtually any methodological framework, including the perspective of human genetics. We first present a review of the genetic analysis principles relevant for discussing autism genetics research. From this body of work we highlight results from three candidate genes, REELIN (RELN), SEROTONIN TRANSPORTER (5HTT), and ENGRAILED 2 (EN2) and discuss the relevant neuroscience, molecular genetics, and statistical results that suggest involvement of these genes in autism susceptibility. As will be shown, the statistical results from genetic analysis, when considered alone, are in apparent conflict across research groups. We use these three candidate genes to illustrate different problems in synthesizing results from non-overlapping research groups examining the same problem. However, when basic genetic principles and results from other scientific disciplines are incorporated into a unified theoretical framework, at least some of the difficulties with interpreting results can be understood and potentially overcome as more data becomes available to the field of autism research. Integrating results from several scientific frameworks provides new hypotheses and alternative data collection strategies for future work.

  20. Pervasive genetic integration directs the evolution of human skull shape.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Abadías, Neus; Esparza, Mireia; Sjøvold, Torstein; González-José, Rolando; Santos, Mauro; Hernández, Miquel; Klingenberg, Christian Peter

    2012-04-01

    It has long been unclear whether the different derived cranial traits of modern humans evolved independently in response to separate selection pressures or whether they resulted from the inherent morphological integration throughout the skull. In a novel approach to this issue, we combine evolutionary quantitative genetics and geometric morphometrics to analyze genetic and phenotypic integration in human skull shape. We measured human skulls in the ossuary of Hallstatt (Austria), which offer a unique opportunity because they are associated with genealogical data. Our results indicate pronounced covariation of traits throughout the skull. Separate simulations of selection for localized shape changes corresponding to some of the principal derived characters of modern human skulls produced outcomes that were similar to each other and involved a joint response in all of these traits. The data for both genetic and phenotypic shape variation were not consistent with the hypothesis that the face, cranial base, and cranial vault are completely independent modules but relatively strongly integrated structures. These results indicate pervasive integration in the human skull and suggest a reinterpretation of the selective scenario for human evolution where the origin of any one of the derived characters may have facilitated the evolution of the others. © 2011 The Author(s). Evolution© 2011 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  1. Exploring human brain lateralization with molecular genetics and genomics.

    PubMed

    Francks, Clyde

    2015-11-01

    Lateralizations of brain structure and motor behavior have been observed in humans as early as the first trimester of gestation, and are likely to arise from asymmetrical genetic-developmental programs, as in other animals. Studies of gene expression levels in postmortem tissue samples, comparing the left and right sides of the human cerebral cortex, have generally not revealed striking transcriptional differences between the hemispheres. This is likely due to lateralization of gene expression being subtle and quantitative. However, a recent re-analysis and meta-analysis of gene expression data from the adult superior temporal and auditory cortex found lateralization of transcription of genes involved in synaptic transmission and neuronal electrophysiology. Meanwhile, human subcortical mid- and hindbrain structures have not been well studied in relation to lateralization of gene activity, despite being potentially important developmental origins of asymmetry. Genetic polymorphisms with small effects on adult brain and behavioral asymmetries are beginning to be identified through studies of large datasets, but the core genetic mechanisms of lateralized human brain development remain unknown. Identifying subtly lateralized genetic networks in the brain will lead to a new understanding of how neuronal circuits on the left and right are differently fine-tuned to preferentially support particular cognitive and behavioral functions. © 2015 New York Academy of Sciences.

  2. Public Attitudes toward Human Genetic Manipulation: A Revitalization of Eugenics?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Veglia, Geremia; And Others

    The purpose of this investigation was to measure the attitudes of college students across the United States concerning the possible use of genetic manipulation, especially in terms of enhancing human physical and intellectual characteristics. The instrument used was divided into three general areas of inquiry: the first, designed to measure the…

  3. Public Attitudes toward Human Genetic Manipulation: A Revitalization of Eugenics?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Veglia, Geremia; And Others

    The purpose of this investigation was to measure the attitudes of college students across the United States concerning the possible use of genetic manipulation, especially in terms of enhancing human physical and intellectual characteristics. The instrument used was divided into three general areas of inquiry: the first, designed to measure the…

  4. Discovery Genetics – The History and Future of Spontaneous Mutation Research

    PubMed Central

    Davisson, Muriel T.; Bergstrom, David E.; Reinholdt, Laura G.; Donahue, Leah Rae

    2013-01-01

    Historically, spontaneous mutations in mice have served as valuable models of heritable human diseases, contributing substantially to our understanding of both disease mechanisms and basic biological pathways. While advances in molecular technologies have improved our ability to create mouse models of human disease through targeted mutagenesis and transgenesis, spontaneous mutations continue to provide valuable research tools for discovery of novel genes and functions. In addition, the genetic defects caused by spontaneous mutations are molecularly similar to mutations in the human genome and, therefore often produce phenotypes that more closely resemble those characteristic of human disease than do genetically engineered mutations. Due to the rarity with which spontaneous mutations arise and the animal intensive nature of their genetic analysis, large-scale spontaneous mutation analysis has traditionally been limited to large mammalian genetics institutes. More recently, ENU mutagenesis and new screening methods have increased the rate of mutant strain discovery, and high-throughput DNA sequencing has enabled rapid identification of the underlying genes and their causative mutations. Here, we discuss the continued value of spontaneous mutations for biomedical research. PMID:25364627

  5. Human life: genetic or social construction?

    PubMed

    Yudin, Boris

    2005-01-01

    I am going to discuss some present-day tendencies in the development of the very old debate on nature vs nurture. There is a widespread position describing the history of this debate as a pendulum-like process. Some three decades ago there was a time of overwhelming prevalence of the position stressing social factors in determining human character and behavior; now the pendulum has come to the opposite side and those who stress the role of biology, of genes are in favor. Yet in my view rather acute opposition of both positions still exists. Its existence depends not so much on new scientific discoveries as on some social and cultural factors which are more conservative than the development of science. More than that, we can even talk about competition of these two positions.

  6. Genetic regulation of human immunodeficiency virus.

    PubMed Central

    Steffy, K; Wong-Staal, F

    1991-01-01

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has a complex life cycle in which both cellular and virus-encoded factors participate to determine the level of virus production. Two of the viral genes, tat and rev, are essential for virus replication and encode novel trans-activators that interact specifically with their cognate RNA target elements. Elucidation of their mechanisms of action is likely to expand our knowledge of gene regulation at transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels in the eukaryotic cell. Several viral genes (vif, vpu, and vpr) facilitate virus infection and/or release and may play a role in target cell tropism and infection in vivo. The functions of yet other viral genes (nef, vpt) remain unclear. Recent data also suggest that the tat gene product may have a role in HIV pathogenesis that goes beyond trans-activating virus expression. It can potentially impact on uninfected cells as a diffusible molecule and alter the growth of different cell types. PMID:1886517

  7. Uterus transplantation: animal research and human possibilities.

    PubMed

    Brännström, Mats; Diaz-Garcia, Cesar; Hanafy, Ash; Olausson, Michael; Tzakis, Andreas

    2012-06-01

    Uterus transplantation research has been conducted toward its introduction in the human as a treatment of absolute uterine-factor infertility, which is considered to be the last frontier to conquer for infertility research. In this review we describe the patient populations that may benefit from uterus transplantation. The animal research on uterus transplantation conducted during the past two decades is summarized, and we describe our views regarding a future research-based human attempt.

  8. Progress and prospects for genetic modification of nonhuman primate models in biomedical research.

    PubMed

    Chan, Anthony W S

    2013-01-01

    The growing interest of modeling human diseases using genetically modified (transgenic) nonhuman primates (NHPs) is a direct result of NHPs (rhesus macaque, etc.) close relation to humans. NHPs share similar developmental paths with humans in their anatomy, physiology, genetics, and neural functions; and in their cognition, emotion, and social behavior. The NHP model within biomedical research has played an important role in the development of vaccines, assisted reproductive technologies, and new therapies for many diseases. Biomedical research has not been the primary role of NHPs. They have mainly been used for safety evaluation and pharmacokinetics studies, rather than determining therapeutic efficacy. The development of the first transgenic rhesus macaque (2001) revolutionized the role of NHP models in biomedicine. Development of the transgenic NHP model of Huntington's disease (2008), with distinctive clinical features, further suggested the uniqueness of the model system; and the potential role of the NHP model for human genetic disorders. Modeling human genetic diseases using NHPs will continue to thrive because of the latest advances in molecular, genetic, and embryo technologies. NHPs rising role in biomedical research, specifically pre-clinical studies, is foreseeable. The path toward the development of transgenic NHPs and the prospect of transgenic NHPs in their new role in future biomedicine needs to be reviewed. This article will focus on the advancement of transgenic NHPs in the past decade, including transgenic technologies and disease modeling. It will outline new technologies that may have significant impact in future NHP modeling and will conclude with a discussion of the future prospects of the transgenic NHP model.

  9. Progress and Prospects for Genetic Modification of Nonhuman Primate Models in Biomedical Research

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Anthony W. S.

    2013-01-01

    The growing interest of modeling human diseases using genetically modified (transgenic) nonhuman primates (NHPs) is a direct result of NHPs (rhesus macaque, etc.) close relation to humans. NHPs share similar developmental paths with humans in their anatomy, physiology, genetics, and neural functions; and in their cognition, emotion, and social behavior. The NHP model within biomedical research has played an important role in the development of vaccines, assisted reproductive technologies, and new therapies for many diseases. Biomedical research has not been the primary role of NHPs. They have mainly been used for safety evaluation and pharmacokinetics studies, rather than determining therapeutic efficacy. The development of the first transgenic rhesus macaque (2001) revolutionized the role of NHP models in biomedicine. Development of the transgenic NHP model of Huntington's disease (2008), with distinctive clinical features, further suggested the uniqueness of the model system; and the potential role of the NHP model for human genetic disorders. Modeling human genetic diseases using NHPs will continue to thrive because of the latest advances in molecular, genetic, and embryo technologies. NHPs rising role in biomedical research, specifically pre-clinical studies, is foreseeable. The path toward the development of transgenic NHPs and the prospect of transgenic NHPs in their new role in future biomedicine needs to be reviewed. This article will focus on the advancement of transgenic NHPs in the past decade, including transgenic technologies and disease modeling. It will outline new technologies that may have significant impact in future NHP modeling and will conclude with a discussion of the future prospects of the transgenic NHP model. PMID:24174443

  10. Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM), a knowledgebase of human genes and genetic disorders.

    PubMed

    Hamosh, Ada; Scott, Alan F; Amberger, Joanna S; Bocchini, Carol A; McKusick, Victor A

    2005-01-01

    Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a comprehensive, authoritative and timely knowledgebase of human genes and genetic disorders compiled to support human genetics research and education and the practice of clinical genetics. Started by Dr Victor A. McKusick as the definitive reference Mendelian Inheritance in Man, OMIM (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/omim/) is now distributed electronically by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, where it is integrated with the Entrez suite of databases. Derived from the biomedical literature, OMIM is written and edited at Johns Hopkins University with input from scientists and physicians around the world. Each OMIM entry has a full-text summary of a genetically determined phenotype and/or gene and has numerous links to other genetic databases such as DNA and protein sequence, PubMed references, general and locus-specific mutation databases, HUGO nomenclature, MapViewer, GeneTests, patient support groups and many others. OMIM is an easy and straightforward portal to the burgeoning information in human genetics.

  11. Increasing global participation in genetics research through DNA barcoding.

    PubMed

    Adamowicz, Sarah J; Steinke, Dirk

    2015-12-01

    DNA barcoding--the sequencing of short, standardized DNA regions for specimen identification and species discovery--has promised to facilitate rapid access to biodiversity knowledge by diverse users. Here, we advance our opinion that increased global participation in genetics research is beneficial, both to scientists and for science, and explore the premise that DNA barcoding can help to democratize participation in genetics research. We examine publication patterns (2003-2014) in the DNA barcoding literature and compare trends with those in the broader, related domain of genomics. While genomics is the older and much larger field, the number of nations contributing to the published literature is similar between disciplines. Meanwhile, DNA barcoding exhibits a higher pace of growth in the number of publications as well as greater evenness among nations in their proportional contribution to total authorships. This exploration revealed DNA barcoding to be a highly international discipline, with growing participation by researchers in especially biodiverse nations. We briefly consider several of the challenges that may hinder further participation in genetics research, including access to training and molecular facilities as well as policy relating to the movement of genetic resources.

  12. Psychological Issues in Cancer Genetics: Current Research and Future Priorities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopwood, Penelope

    1997-01-01

    Data concerning the psychological impact of high risk of cancer are reviewed, including implications of genetic testing, breast screening,and accuracy of women's risk estimates. Work in progress on prophylactic mastectomy and chemoprevention is reviewed. Research on cancer families, and interventions and prevention strategies for high-risk…

  13. Genetic research for wildlife and fisheries management - A primer

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pawlitz, Rachel J.; Hunter, Margaret E.; Johnson, Nathan A.

    2012-01-01

    Scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) use a range of research approaches to investigate the genetics of native and non-native species that are being managed. This Fact Sheet outlines those approaches and explains the type of information they provide.

  14. Provenance research: investigation of genetic diversity associated with geography

    Treesearch

    Robert Z. Callaham

    1963-01-01

    Provenance in forestry refers to the population of trees growing at n particular place of origin. Provenance research defines the genetic and environmental components of phenotypic variation associated with geographic source. Information on provenance is important in assuring sources of seed to give well-adapted, productive trees and in directing breeding of...

  15. Psychological Issues in Cancer Genetics: Current Research and Future Priorities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopwood, Penelope

    1997-01-01

    Data concerning the psychological impact of high risk of cancer are reviewed, including implications of genetic testing, breast screening,and accuracy of women's risk estimates. Work in progress on prophylactic mastectomy and chemoprevention is reviewed. Research on cancer families, and interventions and prevention strategies for high-risk…

  16. Field-based phenomics for plant genetics research

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Perhaps the greatest challenge for crop research in the 21st century is how to predict crop performance as a function of genetic architecture and climate change. Advances in “next generation” DNA sequencing have greatly reduced genotyping costs. Methods for characterization of plant traits (phenotyp...

  17. African diversity may hold key to human origins, medical questions. Genetic diversity.

    PubMed

    1999-02-01

    The genetic diversity of human populations in Africa has been studied less in Africa than it has been in Europe and Asia. However, the study of such diversity in Africa is important to the determination of where, when, and how modern humans evolved; to gain insight into the genetic diseases of Africans and African-Americans; and to identify potential treatments for diseases like malaria and HIV. Dr. Sarah Tishkoff et al.'s study of 3 locations on DNA samples from 13-18 populations in Africa and 30-45 other populations in other parts of the world found extremely high genetic diversity both within and between the African populations, and much less diversity in non-African populations. Tishkoff's research team examined the genetic information inherited from both the father and mother, which exists upon a strand of DNA close enough together that the markers are transferred intact. The use of genetic markers to trace lineages found that modern humans appear to have emerged from Africa 100,000-150,000 years ago and that the population which left Africa was rather small. These data agree with earlier research findings. The findings of Tishkoff et al. also suggest that the group which migrated from Africa came from northern East Africa.

  18. Genetic fatalism and social policy: the implications of behavior genetics research.

    PubMed Central

    Alper, J. S.; Beckwith, J.

    1993-01-01

    Recent advances in molecular genetics methods have provided new means of determining the genetic bases of human behavioral traits. The impetus for the use of these approaches for specific behaviors depends, in large part, on previous familial studies on inheritance of such traits. In the past, a finding of a genetic basis for a trait was often accompanied with the idea that that trait is unchangeable. We discuss the definition of "genetic trait" and heritability and examine the relationship between these concepts and the malleability of traits for both molecular and nonmolecular approaches to behavioral genetics. We argue that the malleability of traits is as much a social and political question as it is a biological one and that whether or not a trait is genetic has little relevance to questions concerning determinism, free will, and individual responsibility for actions. We conclude by noting that "scientific objectivity" should not be used to conceal the social perspectives that underlie proposals regarding social change. PMID:7716971

  19. The changing landscape of genetic testing and its impact on clinical and laboratory services and research in Europe.

    PubMed

    Hastings, Ros; de Wert, Guido; Fowler, Brian; Krawczak, Michael; Vermeulen, Eric; Bakker, Egbert; Borry, Pascal; Dondorp, Wybo; Nijsingh, Niels; Barton, David; Schmidtke, Jörg; van El, Carla G; Vermeesch, Joris; Stol, Yrrah; Carmen Howard, Heidi; Cornel, Martina C

    2012-09-01

    The arrival of new genetic technologies that allow efficient examination of the whole human genome (microarray, next-generation sequencing) will impact upon both laboratories (cytogenetic and molecular genetics in the first instance) and clinical/medical genetic services. The interpretation of analytical results in terms of their clinical relevance and the predicted health status poses a challenge to both laboratory and clinical geneticists, due to the wealth and complexity of the information obtained. There is a need to discuss how to best restructure the genetic services logistically and to determine the clinical utility of genetic testing so that patients can receive appropriate advice and genetic testing. To weigh up the questions and challenges of the new genetic technologies, the European Society of Human Genetics (ESHG) held a series of workshops on 10 June 2010 in Gothenburg. This was part of an ESHG satellite symposium on the 'Changing landscape of genetic testing', co-organized by the ESHG Genetic Services Quality and Public and Professional Policy Committees. The audience consisted of a mix of geneticists, ethicists, social scientists and lawyers. In this paper, we summarize the discussions during the workshops and present some of the identified ways forward to improve and adapt the genetic services so that patients receive accurate and relevant information. This paper covers ethics, clinical utility, primary care, genetic services and the blurring boundaries between healthcare and research.

  20. The changing landscape of genetic testing and its impact on clinical and laboratory services and research in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Hastings, Ros; de Wert, Guido; Fowler, Brian; Krawczak, Michael; Vermeulen, Eric; Bakker, Egbert; Borry, Pascal; Dondorp, Wybo; Nijsingh, Niels; Barton, David; Schmidtke, Jörg; van El, Carla G; Vermeesch, Joris; Stol, Yrrah; Carmen Howard, Heidi; Cornel, Martina C

    2012-01-01

    The arrival of new genetic technologies that allow efficient examination of the whole human genome (microarray, next-generation sequencing) will impact upon both laboratories (cytogenetic and molecular genetics in the first instance) and clinical/medical genetic services. The interpretation of analytical results in terms of their clinical relevance and the predicted health status poses a challenge to both laboratory and clinical geneticists, due to the wealth and complexity of the information obtained. There is a need to discuss how to best restructure the genetic services logistically and to determine the clinical utility of genetic testing so that patients can receive appropriate advice and genetic testing. To weigh up the questions and challenges of the new genetic technologies, the European Society of Human Genetics (ESHG) held a series of workshops on 10 June 2010 in Gothenburg. This was part of an ESHG satellite symposium on the ‘Changing landscape of genetic testing', co-organized by the ESHG Genetic Services Quality and Public and Professional Policy Committees. The audience consisted of a mix of geneticists, ethicists, social scientists and lawyers. In this paper, we summarize the discussions during the workshops and present some of the identified ways forward to improve and adapt the genetic services so that patients receive accurate and relevant information. This paper covers ethics, clinical utility, primary care, genetic services and the blurring boundaries between healthcare and research. PMID:22453292

  1. An atlas of genetic influences on human blood metabolites

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Rita; Huang, Jie; Arnold, Matthias; Erte, Idil; Forgetta, Vincenzo; Yang, Tsun-Po; Walter, Klaudia; Menni, Cristina; Chen, Lu; Vasquez, Louella; Valdes, Ana M.; Hyde, Craig L.; Wang, Vicky; Ziemek, Daniel; Xi, Li; Grundberg, Elin; Waldenberger, Melanie; Richards, J. Brent; Mohney, Robert P.; Milburn, Michael V.; John, Sally L.; Trimmer, Jeff; Theis, Fabian J.; Overington, John P.; Suhre, Karsten; Brosnan, M. Julia; Gieger, Christian; Kastenmüller, Gabi; Spector, Tim D; Soranzo, Nicole

    2014-01-01

    Genome-wide association scans with high-throughput metabolic profiling provide unprecedented insights into how genetic variation influences metabolism and complex disease. Here we report the most comprehensive exploration of genetic loci influencing human metabolism to date, including 7,824 adult individuals from two European population studies. We report genome-wide significant associations at 145 metabolic loci and their biochemical connectivity regarding more than 400 metabolites in human blood. We extensively characterize the resulting in vivo blueprint of metabolism in human blood by integrating it with information regarding gene expression, heritability, overlap with known drug targets, previous association with complex disorders and inborn errors of metabolism. We further developed a database and web-based resources for data mining and results visualization. Our findings contribute to a greater understanding of the role of inherited variation in blood metabolic diversity, and identify potential new opportunities for pharmacologic development and disease understanding. PMID:24816252

  2. Construction of multilocus genetic linkage maps in humans.

    PubMed Central

    Lander, E S; Green, P

    1987-01-01

    Human genetic linkage maps are most accurately constructed by using information from many loci simultaneously. Traditional methods for such multilocus linkage analysis are computationally prohibitive in general, even with supercomputers. The problem has acquired practical importance because of the current international collaboration aimed at constructing a complete human linkage map of DNA markers through the study of three-generation pedigrees. We describe here several alternative algorithms for constructing human linkage maps given a specified gene order. One method allows maximum-likelihood multilocus linkage maps for dozens of DNA markers in such three-generation pedigrees to be constructed in minutes. PMID:3470801

  3. [Clinical implications of molecular genetic research in otorhinolaryngology].

    PubMed

    Gürtler, N

    2003-08-01

    Molecular-genetic research in Otolaryngology has seen a rapid advancement during the last ten years, especially in the fields of otology and head and neck tumors. The results of this basic research have now started to be implemented in the clinic. In otology the understanding of auditive function has dramatically improved. The syndromic and non-syndromic forms of hereditary hearing impairment can be subdivided into their underlying genetic defects, as more and more genes are identified. Diagnostic of syndromic hearing loss has been improved and can be done earlier. But the molecular-genetic analysis is still time-consuming and difficult. Currently, in our clinic, only patients with suspected Pendred-syndrome, representing the most frequent syndrome with hearing impairment, undergo a routine search for mutation detection in the corresponding gene SLC26A4. A multitude of genes and mutations are seen in the non-syndromic forms of hereditary hearing impairment. The gene gap-junction-protein beta2, encoding connexin 26, is encountered most frequently. Its prevalence in Switzerland is high with about 20% in the non-syndromic group. A molecular-genetic analysis of connexin 26 is offered in cases of congenital hearing loss. Another analysis, which has been implemented in the clinic, is the sequencing of Wolfram-syndrome gene 1 in familial low-frequency hearing loss. This gene seems to be involved in the majority of families with this type of hearing loss. Gene therapy for hearing loss is currently not an option in the clinical field. The different steps in carcinogenesis of head and neck cancer have further been elucidated by molecular-genetic research. Clinical applications are the establishment of risk-profiles for tumor-development and defining prognostic markers as well as the development of new treatment strategies based on genetic therapy.

  4. The Trustworthiness Deficit in Postgenomic Research on Human Intelligence.

    PubMed

    Richardson, Sarah S

    2015-01-01

    In the past, work on racial and ethnic variation in brain and behavior was marginalized within genetics. Against the backdrop of genetics' eugenic legacy, wide consensus held such research to be both ethically problematic and methodologically controversial. But today it is finding new opportunistic venues in a global, transdisciplinary, data-rich postgenomic research environment in which such a consensus is increasingly strained. The postgenomic sciences display worrisome deficits in their ability to govern and negotiate standards for making postgenomic claims in the transdisciplinary space between human population variation research, studies of intelligence, neuroscience, and evolutionary biology. Today some researchers are pursuing the genomics of intelligence on a newly grand scale. They are sequencing large numbers of whole genomes of people considered highly intelligent (by varying empirical and social measures) in the hope of finding gene variants predictive of intelligence. Troubling and at times outlandish futurist claims accompany this research. Scientists involved in this research have openly discussed the possibility of marketing prenatal tests for intelligence, of genetic engineering or selective embryo implantation to increase the likelihood of a high-IQ child, and of genotyping children to guide their education. In this permissive and contested environment, what would trustworthy research on the genomics of high intelligence look like?

  5. The genetic basis of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in cats and humans.

    PubMed

    Kittleson, Mark D; Meurs, Kathryn M; Harris, Samantha P

    2015-12-01

    Mutations in genes that encode for muscle sarcomeric proteins have been identified in humans and two breeds of domestic cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). This article reviews the history, genetics, and pathogenesis of HCM in the two species in order to give veterinarians a perspective on the genetics of HCM. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in people is a genetic disease that has been called a disease of the sarcomere because the preponderance of mutations identified that cause HCM are in genes that encode for sarcomeric proteins (Maron and Maron, 2013). Sarcomeres are the basic contractile units of muscle and thus sarcomeric proteins are responsible for the strength, speed, and extent of muscle contraction. In people with HCM, the two most common genes affected by HCM mutations are the myosin heavy chain gene (MYH7), the gene that encodes for the motor protein β-myosin heavy chain (the sarcomeric protein that splits ATP to generate force), and the cardiac myosin binding protein-C gene (MYBPC3), a gene that encodes for the closely related structural and regulatory protein, cardiac myosin binding protein-C (cMyBP-C). To date, the two mutations linked to HCM in domestic cats (one each in Maine Coon and Ragdoll breeds) also occur in MYBPC3 (Meurs et al., 2005, 2007). This is a review of the genetics of HCM in both humans and domestic cats that focuses on the aspects of human genetics that are germane to veterinarians and on all aspects of feline HCM genetics. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Ethics and trends in applied human genetics.

    PubMed

    Fletcher, J C

    1983-01-01

    Unless present trends change, in the next few years the public will see earlier and safer methods of prenatal diagnosis combined with more efficacious methods of fetal therapy. For some time to come, the power to diagnose will far outstrip the power to treat, but with sufficient research and resources, the 2 activities of fetal medicine will assume more balance. The effect of conjoining therapy to diagnosis will bring about a more ethical balance between the immediate risks and benefits of prenatal diagnosis. Abortion will not cease to be a controversial issue in the context of fetal medicine, but the ability to offer treatment to more affected fetuses will create more assurance that progress in diagnosis and treatment will not be halted due to legal and constitutional efforts to protect the life of the fetus. At the same time, special attention should be paid to the mother, father and extended family of the fetus diagnosed for a treatable disorder. Careful discussion and clear communication may prevent misunderstandings and surface family problems that could arise at the last minute to complicate the mother's consent to treatment. When the risks are significant for the mother and the benefits of treatment are unclear, there should be no suggestion or appearance of pressure on her to agree. The same principle should apply even when the risks to the mother are minimal and the benefits to the future child are unclear.

  7. Defining the Genetic Architecture of Human Developmental Language Impairment

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ning; Bartlett, Christopher W.

    2012-01-01

    Language is a uniquely human trait, which poses limitations on animal models for discovering biological substrates and pathways. Despite this challenge, rapidly developing biotechnology in the field of genomics has made human genetics studies a viable alternative route for defining the molecular neuroscience of human language. This is accomplished by studying families that transmit both normal and disordered language across generations. The language disorder reviewed here is specific language impairment (SLI), a developmental deficiency in language acquisition despite adequate opportunity, normal intelligence, and without any apparent neurological etiology. Here, we describe disease gene discovery paradigms as applied to SLI families and review the progress this field has made. After review the evidence that genetic factors influence SLI, we discuss methods and findings from scans of the human chromosomes, including the main replicated regions on chromosomes 13, 16 and 19 and two identified genes, ATP2C2 and CMIP that appear to account for the language variation on chromosome 16. Additional work has been done on candidate genes, i.e., genes chosen a priori and not through a genome scanning studies, including several studies of CNTNAP2 and some recent work implicating BDNF as a gene × gene interaction partner of genetic variation on chromosome 13 that influences language. These recent developments may allow for better use of post-mortem human brain samples functional studies and animal models for circumscribed language subcomponents. In the future, the identification of genetic variation associated with language phenotypes will provide the molecular pathways to understanding human language. PMID:22365959

  8. Defining the genetic architecture of human developmental language impairment.

    PubMed

    Li, Ning; Bartlett, Christopher W

    2012-04-09

    Language is a uniquely human trait, which poses limitations on animal models for discovering biological substrates and pathways. Despite this challenge, rapidly developing biotechnology in the field of genomics has made human genetics studies a viable alternative route for defining the molecular neuroscience of human language. This is accomplished by studying families that transmit both normal and disordered language across generations. The language disorder reviewed here is specific language impairment (SLI), a developmental deficiency in language acquisition despite adequate opportunity, normal intelligence, and without any apparent neurological etiology. Here, we describe disease gene discovery paradigms as applied to SLI families and review the progress this field has made. After review the evidence that genetic factors influence SLI, we discuss methods and findings from scans of the human chromosomes, including the main replicated regions on chromosomes 13, 16 and 19 and two identified genes, ATP2C2 and CMIP that appear to account for the language variation on chromosome 16. Additional work has been done on candidate genes, i.e., genes chosen a priori and not through a genome scanning studies, including several studies of CNTNAP2 and some recent work implicating BDNF as a gene x gene interaction partner of genetic variation on chromosome 13 that influences language. These recent developments may allow for better use of post-mortem human brain samples functional studies and animal models for circumscribed language subcomponents. In the future, the identification of genetic variation associated with language phenotypes will provide the molecular pathways to understanding human language. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. The ethics of genetic research on sexual orientation.

    PubMed

    Schüklenk, U; Stein, E; Kerin, J; Byne, W

    1997-01-01

    Research into the genetic component of some complex behaviors often causes controversy, depending on the social meaning and significance of the behavior under study. Research into sexual orientation-simplistically referred to as "gay gene" research-is an example of research that provokes intense controversy. This research is worrisome for many reasons, including the fact that it has been used to harm lesbians and gay men. Many homosexual people have been forced to undergo "treatments" to change their sexual orientation. Other chose to undergo them to escape discrimination and social disapprobation. But there are other reasons to worry about such research. The very motivation for seeking an "origin" of homosexuality reveals homophobia. Moreover, such research may lead to prenatal tests that claim to predict for homosexuality. For homosexual people who live in countries with no legal protections these dangers are particularly serious.

  10. Mapping genetic influences on the corticospinal motor system in humans.

    PubMed

    Cheeran, B J; Ritter, C; Rothwell, J C; Siebner, H R

    2009-11-24

    It is becoming increasingly clear that genetic variations account for a certain amount of variance in the acquisition and maintenance of different skills. Until now, several levels of genetic influences were examined, ranging from global heritability estimates down to the analysis of the contribution of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) and variable number tandem repeats. In humans, the corticospinal motor system is essential to the acquisition of fine manual motor skills which require a finely tuned coordination of activity in distal forelimb muscles. Here we review recent brain mapping studies that have begun to explore the influence of functional genetic variation as well as mutations on function and structure of the human corticospinal motor system, and also the clinical implications of these studies. Transcranial magnetic stimulation of the primary motor hand area revealed a modulatory role of the common val66met polymorphism in the BDNF gene on corticospinal plasticity. Diffusion-sensitive magnetic resonance imaging has been employed to pinpoint subtle structural changes in corticospinal motor projections in individuals carrying a mutation in genes associated with motor neuron degeneration. These studies underscore the potential of non-invasive brain mapping techniques to characterize the genetic influence on the human corticospinal motor system.

  11. Integrated Extravehicular Activity Human Research Plan: 2017

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abercromby, Andrew

    2017-01-01

    Multiple organizations within NASA as well as industry and academia fund and participate in research related to extravehicular activity (EVA). In October 2015, representatives of the EVA Office, the Crew and Thermal Systems Division (CTSD), and the Human Research Program (HRP) at NASA Johnson Space Center agreed on a formal framework to improve multi-year coordination and collaboration in EVA research. At the core of the framework is an Integrated EVA Human Research Plan and a process by which it will be annually reviewed and updated. The over-arching objective of the collaborative framework is to conduct multi-disciplinary cost-effective research that will enable humans to perform EVAs safely, effectively, comfortably, and efficiently, as needed to enable and enhance human space exploration missions. Research activities must be defined, prioritized, planned and executed to comprehensively address the right questions, avoid duplication, leverage other complementary activities where possible, and ultimately provide actionable evidence-based results in time to inform subsequent tests, developments and/or research activities. Representation of all appropriate stakeholders in the definition, prioritization, planning and execution of research activities is essential to accomplishing the over-arching objective. A formal review of the Integrated EVA Human Research Plan will be conducted annually. Coordination with stakeholders outside of the EVA Office, CTSD, and HRP is already in effect on a study-by-study basis; closer coordination on multi-year planning with other EVA stakeholders including academia is being actively pursued. Details of the preliminary Integrated EVA Human Research Plan are presented including description of ongoing and planned research activities in the areas of: physiological and performance capabilities; suit design parameters; EVA human health and performance modeling; EVA tasks and concepts of operations; EVA informatics; human-suit sensors; suit

  12. Teaching Human Genetics with Mustard: Rapid Cycling "Brassica rapa" (Fast Plants Type) as a Model for Human Genetics in the Classroom Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wendell, Douglas L.; Pickard, Dawn

    2007-01-01

    We have developed experiments and materials to model human genetics using rapid cycling "Brassica rapa", also known as Fast Plants. Because of their self-incompatibility for pollination and the genetic diversity within strains, "B. rapa" can serve as a relevant model for human genetics in teaching laboratory experiments. The experiment presented…

  13. Teaching Human Genetics with Mustard: Rapid Cycling "Brassica rapa" (Fast Plants Type) as a Model for Human Genetics in the Classroom Laboratory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wendell, Douglas L.; Pickard, Dawn

    2007-01-01

    We have developed experiments and materials to model human genetics using rapid cycling "Brassica rapa", also known as Fast Plants. Because of their self-incompatibility for pollination and the genetic diversity within strains, "B. rapa" can serve as a relevant model for human genetics in teaching laboratory experiments. The experiment presented…

  14. Application of Humanized Mice in Immunological Research.

    PubMed

    Tu, Wenwei; Zheng, Jian

    2016-01-01

    During the past decade, the development of humanized mouse models and their general applications in biomedical research greatly accelerated the translation of outcomes obtained from basic research into potential diagnostic and therapeutic strategies in clinic. In this chapter, we firstly present an overview on the history and current progress of diverse humanized mouse models and then focus on those equipped with reconstituted human immune system. The update advancement in the establishment of humanized immune system mice and their applications in the studies of the development of human immune system and the pathogenesis of multiple human immune-related diseases are intensively reviewed here, while the shortcoming and perspective of these potent tools are discussed as well. As a valuable bridge across the gap between bench work and clinical trial, progressive humanized mouse models will undoubtedly continue to play an indispensable role in the wide area of biomedical research.

  15. Wide disparity of clinical genetics services and EU rare disease research funding across Europe.

    PubMed

    Lynch, Sally Ann; Borg, Isabella

    2016-04-01

    The origins of clinical genetics services vary throughout Europe with some emerging from paediatric medicine and others from an academic laboratory setting. In 2011, the cross-border patients' rights directive recommended the creation of European Research Networks (ERNs) to improve patient care throughout EU. In 2013, the EU recommendation on the care for rare diseases came into place. The process of designating EU centres of expertise in rare diseases is being implemented to allow centres to enter ERNs. Hence, this is an opportune time to reflect on the current status of genetic services and research funding throughout Europe as 80 % of rare diseases have a genetic origin. Our aims were to determine (a) whether EU countries are prepared in terms of appropriate clinical genetic staffing to fulfil the European Union Committee of Experts on Rare Diseases (EUCERD) criteria that will allow national centres to be designated as centres of expertise, (b) which EU countries are successful in grant submissions to EU rare disease research funding and (c) country of origin of researchers from the EU presenting their research work as a spoken presentation at the European Society of Human Genetics annual conference. Our results show there is wide disparity of staffing levels per head of population in clinical genetics units throughout Europe. EU rare disease research funding is not being distributed equitably and the opportunity to present research is skewed with many countries not achieving spoken presentations despite abstract submissions. Inequity in the care of patients with rare diseases exists in Europe. Many countries will struggle to designate centres of expertise as their staffing mix and levels will not meet the EUCERD criteria which may prevent them from entering ERNs. The establishment of a small number of centres of expertise centrally, which is welcome, should not occur at the expense of an overall improvement in EU rare disease patient care. Caution should be

  16. Using genetic research to inform imperiled and invasive species management

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hunter, Margaret E.; Pawlitz, Rachel J.

    2012-01-01

    The long-term viability of species and populations is related to their potential to migrate, reproduce, and adapt to environmental changes. In the southeast United States, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists are providing resource managers with genetic information to improve the long-term survival and sustainability of the Nation's aquatic species. Research focused on native and imperiled species can assess the genetic factors influencing their survival and recovery, while work on invasive species can provide information on their proliferation, dispersal, and impacts on native species.

  17. Genetic eye research in Tasmania: a historical overview.

    PubMed

    Mackey, David A

    2012-03-01

    Although considerable recent work on hereditary eye diseases in Tasmanian families has been published, much of this depended on a century of meticulous pedigree collection by earlier clinical researchers. This article reviews some of the historical papers and the importance they have played in gene discovery and understanding of ophthalmic genetics. Tasmanian families have contributed to the identification of genes for X-linked megalocornea, Leber's hereditary optic neuropathy, retinitis pigmentosa, congenital cataract, ptosis, keratoconus, glaucoma and myopia. The true value of the Tasmanian pedigrees will be realized with the translation of genetic discoveries into early diagnosis and treatment for these eye diseases.

  18. Population genetic tools to dissect innate immunity in humans

    PubMed Central

    Quintana-Murci, Lluis; Clark, Andrew G.

    2014-01-01

    Innate immunity involves direct interactions between the host and the microbial world, both pathogenic and symbiotic, so natural selection is expected to strongly influence genes involved in these processes. Population genetics investigates the impact of past natural selection events on the genome of present-day human populations, and complements immunological, and clinical and epidemiological genetic studies. Recent data show that the impact of selection on the different families of innate immune receptors and their downstream signalling molecules varies considerably. This Review discusses these findings and highlights how they help delineate the relative functional importance of innate immune pathways, which can range from being essential to being redundant. PMID:23470320

  19. [Research advances on medical genetics in China in 2015].

    PubMed

    Li, Yuanfeng; Han, Yubo; Cao, Pengbo; Meng, Jinfeng; Li, Haibei; Qin, Geng; Zhang, Feng; Jin, Guangfu; Yang, Yong; Wu, Lingqian; Ping, Jie; Zhou, Gangqiao

    2016-05-01

    Steady progress has been achieved in the medical genetics in China in 2015, as numerous original researches were published in the world's leading journals. Chinese scientists have made significant contributions to various fields of medical genetics, such as pathogenicity of rare diseases, predisposition of common diseases, somatic mutations of cancer, new technologies and methods, disease-related microRNAs (miRNAs), disease-related long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), disease-related competing endogenous RNAs (ceRNAs), disease-related RNA splicing and molecular evolution. In these fields, Chinese scientists have gradually formed the tendency, from common variants to rare variants, from single omic analyses to multipleomics integration analyses, from genetic discovery to functional confirmation, from basic research to clinical application. Meanwhile, the findings of Chinese scientists have been drawn great attentions of international peers. This review aims to provide an overall picture of the front in Chinese medical genetics, and highlights the important findings and their research strategy.

  20. Human Subjects Research and the Physics Classroom

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kubitskey, Beth W.; Thomsen, Marshall

    2012-09-01

    Physics Education Research is a form of social science research in that it uses human subjects. As physicists we need to be aware of the ethical and legal ramifications of performing this research, taking into account the fundamental differences between working with substances and working with people. For several decades, the federal government has regulated research involving human subjects. With current procedures, a proposal soliciting federal funds for a research project involving human subjects will be flagged by the applicants institution and checked for compliance with appropriate regulations. However, there is a large body of Physics Education Research that is not federally funded and thus may not be flagged. Nevertheless, there are ethical standards that apply to this research. This paper outlines the preliminary considerations for conducting such research.

  1. Human Research Program Integrated Research Plan. Revision C

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Steinberg, Susan

    2011-01-01

    Crew health and performance are critical to successful human exploration beyond low Earth orbit. The Human Research Program (HRP) is essential to enabling extended periods of space exploration because it provides knowledge and tools to mitigate risks to human health and performance. Risks include physiological effects from radiation and hypogravity environments, as well as unique challenges in medical support, human factors, and behavioral or psychological factors. The Human Research Program (HRP) delivers human health and performance countermeasures, knowledge, technologies and tools to enable safe, reliable, and productive human space exploration. Without HRP results, NASA will face unknown and unacceptable risks for mission success and post-mission crew health. This Integrated Research Plan (IRP) describes (1) HRP's approach and research activities that are intended to address the needs of human space exploration and serve HRP customers and (2) the method of integration for risk mitigation. The scope of the IRP is limited to the activities that can be conducted with the resources available to the HRP; it does not contain activities that would be performed if additional resources were available. The timescale of human space exploration is envisioned to take many decades. The IRP illustrates the program s research plan through the timescale of early lunar missions of extended duration.

  2. Genetics of reflex seizures and epilepsies in humans and animals.

    PubMed

    Italiano, Domenico; Striano, Pasquale; Russo, Emilio; Leo, Antonio; Spina, Edoardo; Zara, Federico; Striano, Salvatore; Gambardella, Antonio; Labate, Angelo; Gasparini, Sara; Lamberti, Marco; De Sarro, Giovambattista; Aguglia, Umberto; Ferlazzo, Edoardo

    2016-03-01

    Reflex seizures are epileptic events triggered by specific motor, sensory or cognitive stimulation. This comprehensive narrative review focuses on the role of genetic determinants in humans and animal models of reflex seizures and epilepsies. References were mainly identified through MEDLINE searches until August 2015 and backtracking of references in pertinent studies. Autosomal dominant inheritance with reduced penetrance was proven in several families with photosensitivity. Molecular genetic studies on EEG photoparoxysmal response identified putative loci on chromosomes 6, 7, 13 and 16 that seem to correlate with peculiar seizure phenotype. No specific mutation has been found in Papio papio baboon, although a genetic etiology is likely. Mutation in synaptic vesicle glycoprotein 2A was found in another animal model of photosensitivity (Fayoumi chickens). Autosomal dominant inheritance with incomplete penetrance overlapping with a genetic background for IGE was proposed for some families with primary reading epilepsy. Musicogenic seizures usually occur in patients with focal symptomatic or cryptogenic epilepsies, but they have been reported in rare genetic epilepsies such as Dravet syndrome. A single LGI1 mutation has been described in a girl with seizures evoked by auditory stimuli. Interestingly, heterozygous knockout (Lgi1(+/-)) mice show susceptibility to sound-triggered seizures. Moreover, in Frings and Black Swiss mice, the spontaneous mutations of MASS1 and JAMS1 genes, respectively, have been linked to audiogenic seizures. Eating seizures usually occur in symptomatic epilepsies but evidences for a genetic susceptibility were mainly provided by family report from Sri Lanka. Eating seizures were also reported in rare patients with MECP2 duplication or mutation. Hot water seizures are genetically heterogeneous but two loci at chromosomes 4 and 10 were identified in families with likely autosomal dominant inheritance. Startle-induced seizures usually occur in

  3. Human Research and Complexity Theory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Horn, James

    2008-01-01

    The disavowal of positivist science by many educational researchers has resulted in a deepening polarization of research agendas and an epistemological divide that appears increasingly difficult to span. Despite a turning away from science altogether by some, and thus toward various forms of poststructuralist inquiry, this has not held back the…

  4. Human Research and Complexity Theory

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Horn, James

    2008-01-01

    The disavowal of positivist science by many educational researchers has resulted in a deepening polarization of research agendas and an epistemological divide that appears increasingly difficult to span. Despite a turning away from science altogether by some, and thus toward various forms of poststructuralist inquiry, this has not held back the…

  5. Genomics: disclose the influence of human specific genetic variation on the evolution and development of cerebral cortex.

    PubMed

    Maomao, Pu; Jun, Yao; Xin, Cao

    2016-11-20

    Cerebral cortex, whose complexity of structure and function has derived from human specific genetic variation, is the most advanced nerve center of human, controlling the cognitive ability which distinguishes human from any other creatures. Using genomics technology, molecular mechanisms of cerebral cortex development and evolution have been disclosed. In this review, we summarize how genomics technologies are used in exploring the influence of human specific genetic variation on cerebral cortex development and evolution, including the genomics methods to study the gene expression differences among the cerebral cortex of human beings, chimpanzee and other mammals; as well as the role of the significant non-coding regulatory sequences-human accelerated regions (HARs) in the process of brain development. We also discuss the future research trends on the human specific genetic variation in the field of neurobiology.

  6. Identification of spatial genetic boundaries using a multifractal model in human population genetics.

    PubMed

    Xue, Fuzhong; Wang, Jiezhen; Hu, Ping; Ma, Daoxin; Liu, Jing; Li, Guifu; Zhang, Li; Wu, Min; Sun, Guoqing; Hou, Haifeng

    2005-10-01

    There are two purposes in displaying spatial genetic structure. One is that a visual representation of the variation of the genetic variable should be provided in the contour map. The other is that spatial genetic structure should be reflected by the patterns or the gradients with genetic boundaries in the map. Nevertheless, most conventional interpolation methods, such as Cavalli-Sforza's method in genography, inverse distance-weighted methods, and the Kriging technique, focus only on the first primary purpose because of their arbitrary thresholds marked on the maps. In this paper we present an application of the contour area multifractal model (CAMM) to human population genetics. The method enables the analysis of the geographic distribution of a genetic marker and provides an insight into the spatial and geometric properties of obtained patterns. Furthermore, the CAMM may overcome some of the limitations of other interpolation techniques because no arbitrary thresholds are necessary in the computation of genetic boundaries. The CAMM is built by establishing power law relationships between the area A (> or =rho) in the contour map and the value p itself after plotting these values on a log-log graph. A series of straight-line segments can be fitted to the points on the log-log graph, each representing a power law relationship between the area A (> or =rho) and the cutoff genetic variable value for rho in a particular range. These straight-line segments can yield a group of cutoff values, which can be identified as the genetic boundaries that can classify the map of genetic variable into discrete genetic zones. These genetic zones usually correspond to spatial genetic structure on the landscape. To provide a better understanding of the interest in the CAMM approach, we analyze the spatial genetic structures of three loci (ABO, HLA-A, and TPOX) in China using the CAMM. Each synthetic principal component (SPC) contour map of the three loci is created by using both

  7. Beneficence as a principle in human research.

    PubMed

    Pieper, Ian; Thomson, Colin J H

    2016-06-01

    Beneficence is one of the four principles that form the basis of the Australian National Statement. The aim of this paper is to explore the philosophical development of this principle and to clarify the role that beneficence plays in contemporary discussions about human research ethics. By examining the way that guidance documents, particularly the National Statement, treats beneficence we offer guidance to researchers and human research ethics committee members on the practical application of what can be a conceptually difficult principle.

  8. Genetic researches on growth traits of Japanese quail

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atalay, Sertaç

    2017-04-01

    The main objective of the poultry industry is to increase genetic capacity of animals. Growth is one of the most important economic trait in poultry production. Thus, to obtain genetically superior animals related to growth traits is one of the most important issues of poultry breeding programs. Japanese quail is one of the most productive animals in poultry species. Although Japanese quail is small body size, It has high meat and egg production yield. Japanese quail has also important breeding advantages such as short time generation interval, capacity to have a great number of birds per unit area, great reproductive performance, high resistance to diseases and low breeding cost. Therefore, Japanese quail has great advantages for genetic researches and can be used as model animal for major poultry species.

  9. [Research progress on molecular genetics of forest musk deer].

    PubMed

    Jie, Hang; Zheng, Cheng-li; Wang, Jian-ming; Feng, Xiao-lan; Zeng, De-jun; Zhao, Gui-jun

    2015-11-01

    Forest musk deer is one of the large-scale farming musk deer animals with the largest population at the same time. The male musk deer can secrete valuable medicines, which has high medicinal and economic value. Due to the loss of habitat and indiscriminate hunting, the numbers of wild population specie and the distribution have been drastically reduced. Therefore, in-depth understanding of the molecular genetics progress of forest musk deer will pave a way for musk deer protection and breeding. In this review, the progress associated with the molecular marker, genetic classification, artificial breeding, musk secretion and disease in past decades were reviewed, in order to provide a theoretical basis for subsequent molecular genetic researches in forest musk deer.

  10. Genetically engineered bacteria: an emerging tool for environmental remediation and future research perspectives.

    PubMed

    Singh, Jay Shankar; Abhilash, P C; Singh, H B; Singh, Rana P; Singh, D P

    2011-07-01

    This minireview explores the environmental bioremediation mediated by genetically engineered (GE) bacteria and it also highlights the limitations and challenges associated with the release of engineered bacteria in field conditions. Application of GE bacteria based remediation of various heavy metal pollutants is in the forefront due to eco-friendly and lesser health hazards compared to physico-chemical based strategies, which are less eco-friendly and hazardous to human health. A combination of microbiological and ecological knowledge, biochemical mechanisms and field engineering designs would be an essential element for successful in situ bioremediation of heavy metal contaminated sites using engineered bacteria. Critical research questions pertaining to the development and implementation of GE bacteria for enhanced bioremediation have been identified and poised for possible future research. Genetic engineering of indigenous microflora, well adapted to local environmental conditions, may offer more efficient bioremediation of contaminated sites and making the bioremediation more viable and eco-friendly technology. However, many challenges are to be addressed concerning the release of genetically engineered bacteria in field conditions. There are possible risks associated with the use of GE bacteria in field condition, with particular emphasis on ways in which molecular genetics could contribute to the risk mitigation. Both environmental as well as public health concerns need to be addressed by the molecular biologists. Although bioremediation of heavy metals by using the genetically engineered bacteria has been extensively reviewed in the past also, but the bio-safety assessment and factors of genetic pollution have been never the less ignored.

  11. Precise and in situ genetic humanization of 6 Mb of mouse immunoglobulin genes.

    PubMed

    Macdonald, Lynn E; Karow, Margaret; Stevens, Sean; Auerbach, Wojtek; Poueymirou, William T; Yasenchak, Jason; Frendewey, David; Valenzuela, David M; Giallourakis, Cosmas C; Alt, Frederick W; Yancopoulos, George D; Murphy, Andrew J

    2014-04-08

    Genetic humanization, which involves replacing mouse genes with their human counterparts, can create powerful animal models for the study of human genes and diseases. One important example of genetic humanization involves mice humanized for their Ig genes, allowing for human antibody responses within a mouse background (HumAb mice) and also providing a valuable platform for the generation of fully human antibodies as therapeutics. However, existing HumAb mice do not have fully functional immune systems, perhaps because of the manner in which they were genetically humanized. Heretofore, most genetic humanizations have involved disruption of the endogenous mouse gene with simultaneous introduction of a human transgene at a new and random location (so-called KO-plus-transgenic humanization). More recent efforts have attempted to replace mouse genes with their human counterparts at the same genetic location (in situ humanization), but such efforts involved laborious procedures and were limited in size and precision. We describe a general and efficient method for very large, in situ, and precise genetic humanization using large compound bacterial artificial chromosome-based targeting vectors introduced into mouse ES cells. We applied this method to genetically humanize 3-Mb segments of both the mouse heavy and κ light chain Ig loci, by far the largest genetic humanizations ever described. This paper provides a detailed description of our genetic humanization approach, and the companion paper reports that the humoral immune systems of mice bearing these genetically humanized loci function as efficiently as those of WT mice.

  12. Genetic variation and effects on human eating behavior.

    PubMed

    de Krom, Mariken; Bauer, Florianne; Collier, David; Adan, R A H; la Fleur, Susanne E

    2009-01-01

    Feeding is a physiological process, influenced by genetic factors and the environment. In recent years, many studies have been performed to unravel the involvement of genetics in both eating behavior and its pathological forms: eating disorders and obesity. In this review, we provide a condensed introduction on the neurological aspects of eating and we describe the current status of research into the genetics of eating behavior, primarily focused on specific traits such as taste, satiation, and hunger. This is followed by an overview on the genetic studies done to unravel the heritable background of obesity and eating disorders. We examine the discussion currently taking place in the field of genetics of complex disorders and phenotypes on how to perform good and powerful studies, with the use of large-scale whole-genome association studies as one of the possible solutions. In the final part of this review, we give our view on the latest developments, including endophenotype approaches and animal studies. Studies of endophenotypes of eating behavior may help to identify core traits that are genetically influenced. Such studies would yield important knowledge on the underlying biological scaffold on which diagnostic criteria for eating disorders could be based and would provide information to influence eating behavior toward healthier living.

  13. The Evolution of Human Genetic and Phenotypic Variation in Africa

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Michael C.

    2010-01-01

    Africa is the birthplace of modern humans, and is the source of the geographic expansion of ancestral populations into other regions of the world. Indigenous Africans are characterized by high levels of genetic diversity within and between populations. The pattern of genetic variation in these populations has been shaped by demographic events occurring over the last 200,000 years. The dramatic variation in climate, diet, and exposure to infectious disease across the continent has also resulted in novel genetic and phenotypic adaptations in extant Africans. This review summarizes some recent advances in our understanding of the demographic history and selective pressures that have influenced levels and patterns of diversity in African populations. PMID:20178763

  14. Basic Research in Human Factors

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1990-07-01

    in the fields of experimental psychology , bimeccanics, mathematical psychology , cognitive and information sciences, sociology, business...administration, organizational and industrial psychology , and engineering. Each of these experts serves on the ccmittee or its subgroup without reimbursement other...studies on macro models and has identified researh needed for the description and prediction of human performance. Its report, which will recammend

  15. Molecular genetics research in ADHD: ethical considerations concerning patients' benefit and resource allocation.

    PubMed

    Rothenberger, Lillian Geza

    2012-12-01

    Immense resource allocations have led to great data output in genetic research. Concerning ADHD resources spent on genetic research are less than those spent on clinical research. But there are successful efforts made to increase support for molecular genetics research in ADHD. Concerning genetics no evidence based conclusive results have significant impact on prevention, diagnosis or treatment yet. With regard to ethical aspects like the patients' benefit and limited resources the question arises if it is indicated to think about a new balance of resource allocation between molecular genetics and non-genetics research in ADHD. An ethical reflection was performed focusing on recent genetic studies and reviews based on a selective literature search. There are plausible reasons why genetic research results in ADHD are somehow disappointing for clinical practice so far. Researchers try to overcome these gaps systematically, without knowing what the potential future benefits for the patients might be. Non-genetic diagnostic/therapeutic research may lead to clinically relevant findings within a shorter period of time. On the other hand, non-genetic research in ADHD may be nurtured by genetic approaches. But, with the latter there exist significant risks of harm like stigmatization and concerns regarding data protection. Isolated speeding up resources of genetic research in ADHD seems questionable from an ethical point of view. There is a need to find a new balance of resource allocation between genetic and non-genetic research in ADHD, probably by integrating genetics more systematically into clinical research. A transdisciplinary debate is recommended.

  16. Human Subjects Research and the Physics Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kubitskey, Beth W.; Thomsen, Marshall

    2012-01-01

    Physics Education Research is a form of social science research in that it uses human subjects. As physicists we need to be aware of the ethical and legal ramifications of performing this research, taking into account the fundamental differences between working with substances and working with people. For several decades, the federal government…

  17. Human genetics. The genetics of Mexico recapitulates Native American substructure and affects biomedical traits.

    PubMed

    Moreno-Estrada, Andrés; Gignoux, Christopher R; Fernández-López, Juan Carlos; Zakharia, Fouad; Sikora, Martin; Contreras, Alejandra V; Acuña-Alonzo, Victor; Sandoval, Karla; Eng, Celeste; Romero-Hidalgo, Sandra; Ortiz-Tello, Patricia; Robles, Victoria; Kenny, Eimear E; Nuño-Arana, Ismael; Barquera-Lozano, Rodrigo; Macín-Pérez, Gastón; Granados-Arriola, Julio; Huntsman, Scott; Galanter, Joshua M; Via, Marc; Ford, Jean G; Chapela, Rocío; Rodriguez-Cintron, William; Rodríguez-Santana, Jose R; Romieu, Isabelle; Sienra-Monge, Juan José; del Rio Navarro, Blanca; London, Stephanie J; Ruiz-Linares, Andrés; Garcia-Herrera, Rodrigo; Estrada, Karol; Hidalgo-Miranda, Alfredo; Jimenez-Sanchez, Gerardo; Carnevale, Alessandra; Soberón, Xavier; Canizales-Quinteros, Samuel; Rangel-Villalobos, Héctor; Silva-Zolezzi, Irma; Burchard, Esteban Gonzalez; Bustamante, Carlos D

    2014-06-13

    Mexico harbors great cultural and ethnic diversity, yet fine-scale patterns of human genome-wide variation from this region remain largely uncharacterized. We studied genomic variation within Mexico from over 1000 individuals representing 20 indigenous and 11 mestizo populations. We found striking genetic stratification among indigenous populations within Mexico at varying degrees of geographic isolation. Some groups were as differentiated as Europeans are from East Asians. Pre-Columbian genetic substructure is recapitulated in the indigenous ancestry of admixed mestizo individuals across the country. Furthermore, two independently phenotyped cohorts of Mexicans and Mexican Americans showed a significant association between subcontinental ancestry and lung function. Thus, accounting for fine-scale ancestry patterns is critical for medical and population genetic studies within Mexico, in Mexican-descent populations, and likely in many other populations worldwide. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  18. Common genetic variants influence human subcortical brain structures.

    PubMed

    Hibar, Derrek P; Stein, Jason L; Renteria, Miguel E; Arias-Vasquez, Alejandro; Desrivières, Sylvane; Jahanshad, Neda; Toro, Roberto; Wittfeld, Katharina; Abramovic, Lucija; Andersson, Micael; Aribisala, Benjamin S; Armstrong, Nicola J; Bernard, Manon; Bohlken, Marc M; Boks, Marco P; Bralten, Janita; Brown, Andrew A; Chakravarty, M Mallar; Chen, Qiang; Ching, Christopher R K; Cuellar-Partida, Gabriel; den Braber, Anouk; Giddaluru, Sudheer; Goldman, Aaron L; Grimm, Oliver; Guadalupe, Tulio; Hass, Johanna; Woldehawariat, Girma; Holmes, Avram J; Hoogman, Martine; Janowitz, Deborah; Jia, Tianye; Kim, Sungeun; Klein, Marieke; Kraemer, Bernd; Lee, Phil H; Olde Loohuis, Loes M; Luciano, Michelle; Macare, Christine; Mather, Karen A; Mattheisen, Manuel; Milaneschi, Yuri; Nho, Kwangsik; Papmeyer, Martina; Ramasamy, Adaikalavan; Risacher, Shannon L; Roiz-Santiañez, Roberto; Rose, Emma J; Salami, Alireza; Sämann, Philipp G; Schmaal, Lianne; Schork, Andrew J; Shin, Jean; Strike, Lachlan T; Teumer, Alexander; van Donkelaar, Marjolein M J; van Eijk, Kristel R; Walters, Raymond K; Westlye, Lars T; Whelan, Christopher D; Winkler, Anderson M; Zwiers, Marcel P; Alhusaini, Saud; Athanasiu, Lavinia; Ehrlich, Stefan; Hakobjan, Marina M H; Hartberg, Cecilie B; Haukvik, Unn K; Heister, Angelien J G A M; Hoehn, David; Kasperaviciute, Dalia; Liewald, David C M; Lopez, Lorna M; Makkinje, Remco R R; Matarin, Mar; Naber, Marlies A M; McKay, D Reese; Needham, Margaret; Nugent, Allison C; Pütz, Benno; Royle, Natalie A; Shen, Li; Sprooten, Emma; Trabzuni, Daniah; van der Marel, Saskia S L; van Hulzen, Kimm J E; Walton, Esther; Wolf, Christiane; Almasy, Laura; Ames, David; Arepalli, Sampath; Assareh, Amelia A; Bastin, Mark E; Brodaty, Henry; Bulayeva, Kazima B; Carless, Melanie A; Cichon, Sven; Corvin, Aiden; Curran, Joanne E; Czisch, Michael; de Zubicaray, Greig I; Dillman, Allissa; Duggirala, Ravi; Dyer, Thomas D; Erk, Susanne; Fedko, Iryna O; Ferrucci, Luigi; Foroud, Tatiana M; Fox, Peter T; Fukunaga, Masaki; Gibbs, J Raphael; Göring, Harald H H; Green, Robert C; Guelfi, Sebastian; Hansell, Narelle K; Hartman, Catharina A; Hegenscheid, Katrin; Heinz, Andreas; Hernandez, Dena G; Heslenfeld, Dirk J; Hoekstra, Pieter J; Holsboer, Florian; Homuth, Georg; Hottenga, Jouke-Jan; Ikeda, Masashi; Jack, Clifford R; Jenkinson, Mark; Johnson, Robert; Kanai, Ryota; Keil, Maria; Kent, Jack W; Kochunov, Peter; Kwok, John B; Lawrie, Stephen M; Liu, Xinmin; Longo, Dan L; McMahon, Katie L; Meisenzahl, Eva; Melle, Ingrid; Mohnke, Sebastian; Montgomery, Grant W; Mostert, Jeanette C; Mühleisen, Thomas W; Nalls, Michael A; Nichols, Thomas E; Nilsson, Lars G; Nöthen, Markus M; Ohi, Kazutaka; Olvera, Rene L; Perez-Iglesias, Rocio; Pike, G Bruce; Potkin, Steven G; Reinvang, Ivar; Reppermund, Simone; Rietschel, Marcella; Romanczuk-Seiferth, Nina; Rosen, Glenn D; Rujescu, Dan; Schnell, Knut; Schofield, Peter R; Smith, Colin; Steen, Vidar M; Sussmann, Jessika E; Thalamuthu, Anbupalam; Toga, Arthur W; Traynor, Bryan J; Troncoso, Juan; Turner, Jessica A; Valdés Hernández, Maria C; van 't Ent, Dennis; van der Brug, Marcel; van der Wee, Nic J A; van Tol, Marie-Jose; Veltman, Dick J; Wassink, Thomas H; Westman, Eric; Zielke, Ronald H; Zonderman, Alan B; Ashbrook, David G; Hager, Reinmar; Lu, Lu; McMahon, Francis J; Morris, Derek W; Williams, Robert W; Brunner, Han G; Buckner, Randy L; Buitelaar, Jan K; Cahn, Wiepke; Calhoun, Vince D; Cavalleri, Gianpiero L; Crespo-Facorro, Benedicto; Dale, Anders M; Davies, Gareth E; Delanty, Norman; Depondt, Chantal; Djurovic, Srdjan; Drevets, Wayne C; Espeseth, Thomas; Gollub, Randy L; Ho, Beng-Choon; Hoffmann, Wolfgang; Hosten, Norbert; Kahn, René S; Le Hellard, Stephanie; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Müller-Myhsok, Bertram; Nauck, Matthias; Nyberg, Lars; Pandolfo, Massimo; Penninx, Brenda W J H; Roffman, Joshua L; Sisodiya, Sanjay M; Smoller, Jordan W; van Bokhoven, Hans; van Haren, Neeltje E M; Völzke, Henry; Walter, Henrik; Weiner, Michael W; Wen, Wei; White, Tonya; Agartz, Ingrid; Andreassen, Ole A; Blangero, John; Boomsma, Dorret I; Brouwer, Rachel M; Cannon, Dara M; Cookson, Mark R; de Geus, Eco J C; Deary, Ian J; Donohoe, Gary; Fernández, Guillén; Fisher, Simon E; Francks, Clyde; Glahn, David C; Grabe, Hans J; Gruber, Oliver; Hardy, John; Hashimoto, Ryota; Hulshoff Pol, Hilleke E; Jönsson, Erik G; Kloszewska, Iwona; Lovestone, Simon; Mattay, Venkata S; Mecocci, Patrizia; McDonald, Colm; McIntosh, Andrew M; Ophoff, Roel A; Paus, Tomas; Pausova, Zdenka; Ryten, Mina; Sachdev, Perminder S; Saykin, Andrew J; Simmons, Andy; Singleton, Andrew; Soininen, Hilkka; Wardlaw, Joanna M; Weale, Michael E; Weinberger, Daniel R; Adams, Hieab H H; Launer, Lenore J; Seiler, Stephan; Schmidt, Reinhold; Chauhan, Ganesh; Satizabal, Claudia L; Becker, James T; Yanek, Lisa; van der Lee, Sven J; Ebling, Maritza; Fischl, Bruce; Longstreth, W T; Greve, Douglas; Schmidt, Helena; Nyquist, Paul; Vinke, Louis N; van Duijn, Cornelia M; Xue, Luting; Mazoyer, Bernard; Bis, Joshua C; Gudnason, Vilmundur; Seshadri, Sudha; Ikram, M Arfan; Martin, Nicholas G; Wright, Margaret J; Schumann, Gunter; Franke, Barbara; Thompson, Paul M; Medland, Sarah E

    2015-04-09

    The highly complex structure of the human brain is strongly shaped by genetic influences. Subcortical brain regions form circuits with cortical areas to coordinate movement, learning, memory and motivation, and altered circuits can lead to abnormal behaviour and disease. To investigate how common genetic variants affect the structure of these brain regions, here we conduct genome-wide association studies of the volumes of seven subcortical regions and the intracranial volume derived from magnetic resonance images of 30,717 individuals from 50 cohorts. We identify five novel genetic variants influencing the volumes of the putamen and caudate nucleus. We also find stronger evidence for three loci with previously established influences on hippocampal volume and intracranial volume. These variants show specific volumetric effects on brain structures rather than global effects across structures. The strongest effects were found for the putamen, where a novel intergenic locus with replicable influence on volume (rs945270; P = 1.08 × 10(-33); 0.52% variance explained) showed evidence of altering the expression of the KTN1 gene in both brain and blood tissue. Variants influencing putamen volume clustered near developmental genes that regulate apoptosis, axon guidance and vesicle transport. Identification of these genetic variants provides insight into the causes of variability in human brain development, and may help to determine mechanisms of neuropsychiatric dysfunction.

  19. Human Genetic Marker for Resistance to Radiations and Chemicals

    SciTech Connect

    Lieberman, Howard B.

    2000-06-01

    The major objective of this project is to understand the genetic basis for resistance of humans to radiations and chemicals. In the fission yeast S. pombe, a gene called rad9 plays a key role in promoting resistance to DNA damaging agents and controlling cell cycle progression after radiation or chemical exposure. This investigation focuses on the characterization of a human homologue of this yeast gene, called HRAD9, with the longterm goal of developing the gene as a genetic marker to predict inherent susceptibility to the deleterious health effects caused by DNA damage. The aims concern a molecular characterization of HRAD9 and determination of its role in mediating the cellular response to radiations and chemicals, as well as its potential role in carcinogenesis.

  20. The ethics of human genetic intervention: a postmodern perspective.

    PubMed

    Dyer, A R

    1997-03-01

    Gene therapy for a particular disease like Parkinson's involves ethical principles worked out for other diseases. The major ethical issues for gene therapy (and the corresponding ethical principles) are safety (nonmalfeasance), efficacy (beneficence), informed consent (autonomy), and allocation of resources (justice). Yet genetic engineering (germ-line interventions or interventions to enhance human potentialities) raises emotions and fears that might cause resistance to gene therapies. Looking at these technologies in a postmodern perspective helps one to appreciate the issues at stake in social and cultural change with a new technology such as gene therapy. While "modern" technology and ethics have focused on the autonomy of the individual, we are beginning to see a lessening of such emphasis on individualism and autonomy and more emphasis on the health of the population. Such a social change could cause technologies about which society may currently be cautious (such as human genetic interventions) to become more acceptable or even expected.

  1. Relating Human Genetic Variation to Variation in Drug Responses

    PubMed Central

    Madian, Ashraf G.; Wheeler, Heather E.; Jones, Richard Baker; Dolan, M. Eileen

    2012-01-01

    Although sequencing a single human genome was a monumental effort a decade ago, more than one thousand genomes have now been sequenced. The task ahead lies in transforming this information into personalized treatment strategies that are tailored to the unique genetics of each individual. One important aspect of personalized medicine is patient-to-patient variation in drug response. Pharmacogenomics addresses this issue by seeking to identify genetic contributors to human variation in drug efficacy and toxicity. Here, we present a summary of the current status of this field, which has evolved from studies of single candidate genes to comprehensive genome-wide analyses. Additionally, we discuss the major challenges in translating this knowledge into a systems-level understanding of drug physiology with the ultimate goal of developing more effective personalized clinical treatment strategies. PMID:22840197

  2. Postnatal human genetic enhancement and the parens patriae doctrine

    PubMed Central

    Tamir, Sivan

    2016-01-01

    Abstract This paper explores the role of the state, acting as parens patriae, with respect to the future-looking technology of postnatal human genetic enhancement (PoGE), applied to minors by their parents or the state. Considering postnatal rather than prenatal genetic enhancement (PGE) allows us to explore the putative obligations of the state with respect to actual persons, in contrast to future persons the subjects of speculative investigation in the traditionally studied case of PGE. Part I features PoGE, mostly by analogy to PGE and other (non-genetic) postnatal enhancements. Part II examines the nature and scope of the parens patriae doctrine, distinguishing between its protective and substitutive facets. I conclude, drawing on contemporary legal constructions, that: a) the state's interference in parental genetic enhancement (GE) discretion, under its protective role, should generally be minimal, reserved to extreme cases where grave harm to the child has been caused or is reasonably foreseeable; and b) since we cannot readily find parents obligated to genetically enhance their offspring, the state as parens patriae, under its substitutive role, will be respectively exempt from such duty towards state-dependent-children, save for certain GEs considered a sine qua non necessity, equally obligating parents and state to provide children with. PMID:28852539

  3. Human Immunodeficiency Virus Research Program

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1993-11-30

    disease process itself, on a realistic appraisal of the course and nature of the global epidemic, and on an accurlate assessment of the strengths and... natural history of a Anef SIVPBj isolate in macaques including virus load measurements, immune function and disease outcome. c) Determine if a Anef...an excellent animal model for human immunodeficiency disease in that the nature and course of the clinical disease are comparable and the immune

  4. Genetic recombination between human and animal parasites creates novel strains of human pathogen.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Wendy; Peacock, Lori; Ferris, Vanessa; Fischer, Katrin; Livingstone, Jennifer; Thomas, James; Bailey, Mick

    2015-03-01

    Genetic recombination between pathogens derived from humans and livestock has the potential to create novel pathogen strains, highlighted by the influenza pandemic H1N1/09, which was derived from a re-assortment of swine, avian and human influenza A viruses. Here we investigated whether genetic recombination between subspecies of the protozoan parasite, Trypanosoma brucei, from humans and animals can generate new strains of human pathogen, T. b. rhodesiense (Tbr) responsible for sleeping sickness (Human African Trypanosomiasis, HAT) in East Africa. The trait of human infectivity in Tbr is conferred by a single gene, SRA, which is potentially transferable to the animal pathogen Tbb by sexual reproduction. We tracked the inheritance of SRA in crosses of Tbr and Tbb set up by co-transmitting genetically-engineered fluorescent parental trypanosome lines through tsetse flies. SRA was readily transferred into new genetic backgrounds by sexual reproduction between Tbr and Tbb, thus creating new strains of the human pathogen, Tbr. There was no evidence of diminished growth or transmissibility of hybrid trypanosomes carrying SRA. Although expression of SRA is critical to survival of Tbr in the human host, we show that the gene exists as a single copy in a representative collection of Tbr strains. SRA was found on one homologue of chromosome IV in the majority of Tbr isolates examined, but some Ugandan Tbr had SRA on both homologues. The mobility of SRA by genetic recombination readily explains the observed genetic variability of Tbr in East Africa. We conclude that new strains of the human pathogen Tbr are being generated continuously by recombination with the much larger pool of animal-infective trypanosomes. Such novel recombinants present a risk for future outbreaks of HAT.

  5. MARRVEL: Integration of Human and Model Organism Genetic Resources to Facilitate Functional Annotation of the Human Genome.

    PubMed

    Wang, Julia; Al-Ouran, Rami; Hu, Yanhui; Kim, Seon-Young; Wan, Ying-Wooi; Wangler, Michael F; Yamamoto, Shinya; Chao, Hsiao-Tuan; Comjean, Aram; Mohr, Stephanie E; Perrimon, Norbert; Liu, Zhandong; Bellen, Hugo J

    2017-06-01

    One major challenge encountered with interpreting human genetic variants is the limited understanding of the functional impact of genetic alterations on biological processes. Furthermore, there remains an unmet demand for an efficient survey of the wealth of information on human homologs in model organisms across numerous databases. To efficiently assess the large volume of publically available information, it is important to provide a concise summary of the most relevant information in a rapid user-friendly format. To this end, we created MARRVEL (model organism aggregated resources for rare variant exploration). MARRVEL is a publicly available website that integrates information from six human genetic databases and seven model organism databases. For any given variant or gene, MARRVEL displays information from OMIM, ExAC, ClinVar, Geno2MP, DGV, and DECIPHER. Importantly, it curates model organism-specific databases to concurrently display a concise summary regarding the human gene homologs in budding and fission yeast, worm, fly, fish, mouse, and rat on a single webpage. Experiment-based information on tissue expression, protein subcellular localization, biological process, and molecular function for the human gene and homologs in the seven model organisms are arranged into a concise output. Hence, rather than visiting multiple separate databases for variant and gene analysis, users can obtain important information by searching once through MARRVEL. Altogether, MARRVEL dramatically improves efficiency and accessibility to data collection and facilitates analysis of human genes and variants by cross-disciplinary integration of 18 million records available in public databases to facilitate clinical diagnosis and basic research. Copyright © 2017 American Society of Human Genetics. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Human genetics and genomics a decade after the release of the draft sequence of the human genome.

    PubMed

    Naidoo, Nasheen; Pawitan, Yudi; Soong, Richie; Cooper, David N; Ku, Chee-Seng

    2011-10-01

    Substantial progress has been made in human genetics and genomics research over the past ten years since the publication of the draft sequence of the human genome in 2001. Findings emanating directly from the Human Genome Project, together with those from follow-on studies, have had an enormous impact on our understanding of the architecture and function of the human genome. Major developments have been made in cataloguing genetic variation, the International HapMap Project, and with respect to advances in genotyping technologies. These developments are vital for the emergence of genome-wide association studies in the investigation of complex diseases and traits. In parallel, the advent of high-throughput sequencing technologies has ushered in the 'personal genome sequencing' era for both normal and cancer genomes, and made possible large-scale genome sequencing studies such as the 1000 Genomes Project and the International Cancer Genome Consortium. The high-throughput sequencing and sequence-capture technologies are also providing new opportunities to study Mendelian disorders through exome sequencing and whole-genome sequencing. This paper reviews these major developments in human genetics and genomics over the past decade.

  7. Human genetics and genomics a decade after the release of the draft sequence of the human genome

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Substantial progress has been made in human genetics and genomics research over the past ten years since the publication of the draft sequence of the human genome in 2001. Findings emanating directly from the Human Genome Project, together with those from follow-on studies, have had an enormous impact on our understanding of the architecture and function of the human genome. Major developments have been made in cataloguing genetic variation, the International HapMap Project, and with respect to advances in genotyping technologies. These developments are vital for the emergence of genome-wide association studies in the investigation of complex diseases and traits. In parallel, the advent of high-throughput sequencing technologies has ushered in the 'personal genome sequencing' era for both normal and cancer genomes, and made possible large-scale genome sequencing studies such as the 1000 Genomes Project and the International Cancer Genome Consortium. The high-throughput sequencing and sequence-capture technologies are also providing new opportunities to study Mendelian disorders through exome sequencing and whole-genome sequencing. This paper reviews these major developments in human genetics and genomics over the past decade. PMID:22155605

  8. Incidental Findings in Genetics Research Using Archived DNA

    PubMed Central

    Clayton, Ellen Wright

    2008-01-01

    You were a patient at Hospital A several years ago when you were suffering from disease X, which has long since resolved. You have just arrived home from a long day's work when the phone rings. When you answer, a soothing voice says, “I am a scientist at Research Institution B two time zones away. I was examining your DNA and found a variant associated with Disease Y that may be really important for your health. Do you want to know about it?” If the scientist were particularly thoughtful, she might ask, “Can you come here for genetic counseling?” You wonder, What is DNA? How did she get mine? What is a variant? What is Disease Y? What is genetic counseling? Who is going to pay for me to go to Research Institution B? Most important, you think, What choice do I have? PMID:18547196

  9. [Teaching experience in integrated course of human development and genetics].

    PubMed

    Qiu, Guang-Rong; Li, Xiao-Ming; Chen, Fang-Jie; Li, Chun-Yi; Liu, Hong; Li, Fu-Cai; Jin, Chun-Lian; Sun, Gui-Yuan; Liu, Cai-Xia; Zhao, Yan-Yan; Sun, Kai-Lai

    2010-04-01

    Establishment of integrated course system in human development and genetics is an important part of course reformation, and the improvement of this system is achieved by integrating the content of course, stabilizing teaching force, building teaching materials and applying problem-based learning. Integrity-PBL teaching model is founded and proved to be feasible and effective by teaching practice. Therefore, it maybe play an important role in improving teaching effect and cultivating ability of students to analyse and solve problems.

  10. Molecular basis of telomere dysfunction in human genetic diseases.

    PubMed

    Sarek, Grzegorz; Marzec, Paulina; Margalef, Pol; Boulton, Simon J

    2015-11-01

    Mutations in genes encoding proteins required for telomere structure, replication, repair and length maintenance are associated with several debilitating human genetic disorders. These complex telomere biology disorders (TBDs) give rise to critically short telomeres that affect the homeostasis of multiple organs. Furthermore, genome instability is often a hallmark of telomere syndromes, which are associated with increased cancer risk. Here, we summarize the molecular causes and cellular consequences of disease-causing mutations associated with telomere dysfunction.

  11. Genetic Analysis of Daily Activity in Humans and Mice

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-02

    of the technical developments that have made such genetic dissections a productive force in the mouse , have, when combined with innovations in...and Mice AFOSR grant F49620-97-1-0321 Joseph S. Takahashi Dept. of Neurobiology & Physiology Northwestern University 2153 North Campus Dr. Evanston...Activity in Humans and Mice Unclassified 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 5d. PROJECT NUMBER 5e. TASK NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) Takahashi, Joseph S. ; 5f. WORK

  12. [Patenting human genetic material: ethical and legal implications].

    PubMed

    Bergel, S D

    2001-01-01

    If we introduce the subject of patents on human genetic material in a Bioethics Conference we must answer two questions. Firstly, whether the debate can be universalized, bearing in mind the national nature of norms governing intellectual property, and, secondly, whether there are links between patent law and ethics. Using the example of the patenting of biological material, we will see how this impacts on society, which, beyond the technical or legal knowledge required, is voicing its concern on the ethical level.

  13. Human genetic variation and the gut microbiome in disease.

    PubMed

    Hall, Andrew Brantley; Tolonen, Andrew C; Xavier, Ramnik J

    2017-08-21

    Taxonomic and functional changes to the composition of the gut microbiome have been implicated in multiple human diseases. Recent microbiome genome-wide association studies reveal that variants in many human genes involved in immunity and gut architecture are associated with an altered composition of the gut microbiome. Although many factors can affect the microbial organisms residing in the gut, a number of recent findings support the hypothesis that certain host genetic variants predispose an individual towards microbiome dysbiosis. This condition, in which the normal microbiome population structure is disturbed, is a key feature in disorders of metabolism and immunity.

  14. Application of genetically modified and cloned pigs in translational research.

    PubMed

    Matsunari, Hitomi; Nagashima, Hiroshi

    2009-06-01

    Pigs are increasingly being recognized as good large-animal models for translational research, linking basic science to clinical applications in order to establish novel therapeutics. This article reviews the current status and future prospects of genetically modified and cloned pigs in translational studies. It also highlights pigs specially designed as disease models, for xenotransplantation or to carry cell marker genes. Finally, use of porcine somatic stem and progenitor cells in preclinical studies of cell transplantation therapy is also discussed.

  15. Human evolution and its relevance for genetic epidemiology.

    PubMed

    Cavalli-Sforza, Luigi Luca

    2007-01-01

    The invitation to write the prefatory article to this volume of the Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics inspired me to collect some thoughts, a few involving ideas that are not new, but perhaps worth resurrecting in light of recent observations made with the data emerging from the Human Genome Diversity Project (HGDP). Data from the many relevant studies based on the HGDP have been made public, as was originally the hope and plan of the project. Here I try to give a short summary of the evolution of modern humans, a unique species in many respects but of special interest to readers of this volume, and a few thoughts on the general rates of evolution that might be relevant to medical genetics and genetic epidemiology. I have made no attempt to give a general bibliography, not even of results from the HGDP, since most authors' conclusions are still unpublished. Citations are limited to very few general concepts and articles discussed in this preface.

  16. Efficient genetic engineering of human intestinal organoids using electroporation.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Masayuki; Matano, Mami; Nanki, Kosaku; Sato, Toshiro

    2015-10-01

    Gene modification in untransformed human intestinal cells is an attractive approach for studying gene function in intestinal diseases. However, because of the lack of practical tools, such studies have largely depended upon surrogates, such as gene-engineered mice or immortalized human cell lines. By taking advantage of the recently developed intestinal organoid culture method, we developed a methodology for modulating genes of interest in untransformed human colonic organoids via electroporation of gene vectors. Here we describe a detailed protocol for the generation of intestinal organoids by culture with essential growth factors in a basement membrane matrix. We also describe how to stably integrate genes via the piggyBac transposon, as well as precise genome editing using the CRISPR-Cas9 system. Beginning with crypt isolation from a human colon sample, genetically modified organoids can be obtained in 3 weeks.

  17. Unequal treatment of human research subjects.

    PubMed

    Resnik, David B

    2015-02-01

    Unequal treatment of human research subjects is a significant ethical concern, because justice in research involving human subjects requires equal protection of rights and equal protection from harm and exploitation. Disputes sometimes arise concerning the issue of unequal treatment of research subjects. Allegedly unequal treatment occurs when subjects are treated differently and there is a genuine dispute concerning the appropriateness of equal treatment. Patently unequal treatment occurs when subjects are treated differently and there is not a genuine dispute about the appropriateness of equal treatment. Allegedly unequal treatment will probably always occur in research with human subjects due to disagreements about fundamental questions of justice. The best way to deal with allegedly unequal treatment is to promote honest and open discussions of the issues at stake. Research regulations can help to minimize patently unequal treatment by providing rules for investigators, ethical review boards, institutions, and sponsors to follow. However, patently unequal treatment may still occur because the regulations are subject to interpretation. Federal agencies have provided interpretive guidance that can help promote consistent review and oversight of human subjects research. Additional direction may be needed on topics that are not adequately covered by current guidance or regulations. International guidelines can help promote equal treatment of human subjects around the globe. While minor variations in the treatment of research subjects should be tolerated and even welcomed, major ones (i.e. those that significantly impact human rights or welfare) should be avoided or minimized.

  18. Accessible Genetics Research Ethics Education (AGREE): A Web-Based Program for IRBs and Investigators

    SciTech Connect

    Sugarman, Jeremy; Lee, Linda

    2006-03-31

    The primary objective of this project was to design and evaluate a series of web-based educational modules on genetics research ethics for members of Institutional Review Boards and investigators to facilitate the development and oversight of important research that is sensitive to the relevant ethical, legal and social issues. After a needs assessment was completed in March of 2003, five online educational modules on the ethics of research in genetics were developed, tested, and made available through a host website for AGREE: http://agree.mc.duke.edu/index.html. The 5 modules are: (1) Ethics and Genetics Research in Populations; (2) Ethics in Behavioral Genetics Research; (3) Ethical Issues in Research on Gene-Environment Interactions; (4) Ethical Issues in Reproductive Genetics Research; and (5) Ethical Issues in Diagnostic and Therapeutic Research. The development process adopted a tested approach used at Duke University School of Medicine in providing education for researchers and IRB members, supplementing it with expert input and a rigorous evaluation. The host website also included a description of the AGREE; short bios on the AGREE Investigators and Expert Advisory Panel; streaming media of selected presentations from a conference, Working at the Frontiers of Law and Science: Applications of the Human Genome held October 2-3, 2003, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and links to online resources in genomics, research ethics, ethics in genomics research, and related organizations. The web site was active beginning with the posting of the first module and was maintained throughout the project period. We have also secured agreement to keep the site active an additional year beyond the project period. AGREE met its primary objective of creating web-based educational modules related to the ethical issues in genetics research. The modules have been disseminated widely. While it is clearly easier to judge the quality of the educational experience

  19. Research on automatic human chromosome image analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ming, Delie; Tian, Jinwen; Liu, Jian

    2007-11-01

    Human chromosome karyotyping is one of the essential tasks in cytogenetics, especially in genetic syndrome diagnoses. In this thesis, an automatic procedure is introduced for human chromosome image analysis. According to different status of touching and overlapping chromosomes, several segmentation methods are proposed to achieve the best results. Medial axis is extracted by the middle point algorithm. Chromosome band is enhanced by the algorithm based on multiscale B-spline wavelets, extracted by average gray profile, gradient profile and shape profile, and calculated by the WDD (Weighted Density Distribution) descriptors. The multilayer classifier is used in classification. Experiment results demonstrate that the algorithms perform well.

  20. New roles for model genetic organisms in understanding and treating human disease: report from the 2006 Genetics Society of America meeting.

    PubMed

    Spradling, Allan; Ganetsky, Barry; Hieter, Phil; Johnston, Mark; Olson, Maynard; Orr-Weaver, Terry; Rossant, Janet; Sanchez, Alejandro; Waterston, Robert

    2006-04-01

    Fundamental biological knowledge and the technology to acquire it have been immeasurably advanced by past efforts to understand and manipulate the genomes of model organisms. Has the utility of bacteria, yeast, worms, flies, mice, plants, and other models now peaked and are humans poised to become the model organism of the future? The Genetics Society of America recently convened its 2006 meeting entitled "Genetic Analysis: Model Organisms to Human Biology" to examine the future role of genetic research. (Because of time limitations, the meeting was unable to cover the substantial contributions and future potential of research on model prokaryotic organisms.) In fact, the potential of model-organism-based studies has grown substantially in recent years. The genomics revolution has revealed an underlying unity between the cells and tissues of eukaryotic organisms from yeast to humans. No uniquely human biological mechanisms have yet come to light. This common evolutionary heritage makes it possible to use genetically tractable organisms to model important aspects of human medical disorders such as cancer, birth defects, neurological dysfunction, reproductive failure, malnutrition, and aging in systems amenable to rapid and powerful experimentation. Applying model systems in this way will allow us to identify common genes, proteins, and processes that underlie human medical conditions. It will allow us to systematically decipher the gene-gene and gene-environment interactions that influence complex multigenic disorders. Above all, disease models have the potential to address a growing gap between our ability to collect human genetic data and to productively interpret and apply it. If model organism research is supported with these goals in mind, we can look forward to diagnosing and treating human disease using information from multiple systems and to a medical science built on the unified history of life on earth.