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It's time to stop being obsessed about the dangers of knowing what's in your genome

It's time to stop being obsessed about the dangers of knowing what's in your genome | leapmind | Scoop.it

There are lots of popular articles I could point to, but let’s start with a recent series in Time that included eight online features and the Dec. 13 cover story, ominously titled “The DNA Dilemma.”

 

The series, written by Bonnie Rochman, is thoroughly reported, balanced, and full of fascinating personal stories about children whose genomes have been sequenced. It’s also timely: The primary question Rochman raises—how much information is too much information?—has been dominating commentaries about genetic testing in the medical literature.

 

But this is the wrong question, or at least one that’s becoming increasingly irrelevant. The personal genomics horse has bolted, and yet many paternalistic members of the medical community are still trying to shut the barn door. In doing so, they’re fostering a culture of DNA fear when what we really need is a realistic and nuanced genetics education.

 

There are many kinds of genetic tests, but most of the hoopla revolves around whole-genome sequences—the impossibly long, letter-by-letter readouts of the DNA inside the nucleus of each of your cells. In 2003, the first human genome was fully sequenced for just shy of $3 billion. Today a doctor can order yours for around $10,000.

 

Though dropping every day, the cost is still prohibitive enough that most people who get their genome sequenced are part of a medical research study. But the technology is beginning to seep into everyday clinical settings, especially for children with rare diseases. In either situation, the doctor or researcher might inadvertently discover genomic information—known as “incidental findings” in the scientific literature and “dark DNA secrets” in one of the Timearticles—that has nothing to do with the child’s sickness or the study at hand. Hence the big dilemma: How much do patients want to know? How much do they need to know?


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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The Handheld DNA Sequencer is Here

The Handheld DNA Sequencer is Here | leapmind | Scoop.it
New Zealand scientists invent a brick-sized prototype that can sequence a DNA sample in less than an hour.
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Robots won't destroy jobs, but they may destroy the middle class

Robots won't destroy jobs, but they may destroy the middle class | leapmind | Scoop.it
Get ready for some immiseration.
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The end of the printed newspaper | Impact Lab

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Why Silicon Valley billionaires are obsessed with Burning Man | leapmind | Scoop.it
Next week the elite of the tech world will spend time at Burning Man, an anarchist festival in the Nevada desert. A who's-who of Silicon Valley has attended in recent years.
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Over 500 gas plumes found to be bubbling up in the ocean along the eastern US coast

Over 500 gas plumes found to be bubbling up in the ocean along the eastern US coast | leapmind | Scoop.it
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Whole organ 'grown' in world first

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Do these startling longevity studies mean your lifespan could double?

Do these startling longevity studies mean your lifespan could double? | leapmind | Scoop.it
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The first metamaterial superconductor: One step closer to futuristic physics-defying contraptions | ExtremeTech

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Modified yeast makes opiates for the first time - life - 26 August 2014 - New Scientist

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Brain size matters when it comes to remembering

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Before we had mobile phones, people had to use their own memory to store long phone numbers (or write them down). But getting those numbers into long-term memory could be a real pain.
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Scientists have worked out the genetic ‘recipe’ that lets lizards regrow their tails (ScienceAlert)

Scientists have worked out the genetic ‘recipe’ that lets lizards regrow their tails (ScienceAlert) | leapmind | Scoop.it
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Researchers find boron facilitates stem cell growth and development in corn | leapmind | Scoop.it
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GEN | News Highlights:CRISPR Reverses Disease Symptoms in Living Animals for First Time

GEN | News Highlights:CRISPR Reverses Disease Symptoms in Living Animals for First Time | leapmind | Scoop.it
MIT scientists report the use of a CRISPR methodology to cure mice of a rare liver disorder caused by a single genetic mutation.
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The Plan to Build a Massive Online Brain for All The World’s Robots | Enterprise | WIRED

The Plan to Build a Massive Online Brain for All The World’s Robots | Enterprise | WIRED | leapmind | Scoop.it
If you walk into the computer science building at Stanford University, Mobi is standing in the lobby, encased in glass. He looks a bit like a garbage can, with a rod for a neck and a camera for eyes.
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Hackers take down PSN with DDOS, and Sony president’s plane with a bomb threat | ExtremeTech

Hackers take down PSN with DDOS, and Sony president’s plane with a bomb threat | ExtremeTech | leapmind | Scoop.it
In a rather bizarre twist of events, a group by the name of Lizard Squad has taken hacking to the next level: Not only did the hackers take down the PlayStation Network with a distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack, but they also took down...
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Soon, Europe Might Not Need Any Power Plants

Soon, Europe Might Not Need Any Power Plants | leapmind | Scoop.it
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Seven innovators over 70 | Impact Lab

Seven innovators over 70 | Impact Lab | leapmind | Scoop.it
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Alzheimer's Patients To Be Given Young Blood In Clinical Trial | IFLScience

Alzheimer's Patients To Be Given Young Blood In Clinical Trial | IFLScience | leapmind | Scoop.it
This October, a clinical trial is set to begin in which patients with Alzheimer’s disease will be given blood from younger people in the hope that it will improve their cognition. While this may sound a little odd, there is method behind the madness.
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How Watson Changed IBM

How Watson Changed IBM | leapmind | Scoop.it
They made it a platform not a product.
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