Personal genomics is a branch of human genomics focused on sequencing and analyzing the unique genome of an individual to help determine optimal healthcare decisions… at least that is where it began. Today, there are companies adopting personal genomics to provide individuals with information on a range of topics from ancestry, diet, athletic training and even optimized wine selection.Read More
DNA Genotek's Sample Collection Blog
The DNA Genotek Helping Hands Program is designed to assist organizations that are innovators in disease research, disease prevention and treatment. The goal of the program is to help accelerate research and to advance the fight against disease across the globe.
Everyone at DNA Genotek is familiar with event-based collections. We’ve worked with dozens of customers over the years to help facilitate collecting samples for breast cancer, epilepsy, HLA-typing and more. Recently, our products were used in an event-based collection to support education and provide information on how genes are linked to our ancestry. The New Horizons Festival (NHF) was held at Erasmus MC and several other public locations in Rotterdam, the Netherlands on September 26, 2014 and over 1,500 people participated. The purpose of the event was to make science accessible and attractive to the general public by merging science with art and music to create a fun, interactive event.
The author of this article, Lisa Gamwell, is a Sales Development Analyst at DNA Genotek.
The remarkable growth in the number of centenarians (people aged ≥ 100) has garnered significant attention over the past 20 or so years. Centenarians have been found to exhibit marked delays in functional decline and age-related lethal diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and stroke. Recently, an even more extreme group, supercentenarians, or people aged 110 and older, has begun to yield sufficient numbers to warrant study. Supercentenarians are living proof that reaching a ripe old age doesn't necessarily mean that you can no longer take care of yourself. Consequently, the interest in genetic studies of these super centenarians is growing.
In the past year, The Genetic Link has explored how genetics is linked to disease, drug response, bone marrow transplants, and even weight loss. I am constantly amazed at the number of new discoveries that link our genes to different aspects of our lives. This past month, I was surprised once again. I recently had the pleasure of speaking with a researcher who is doing some novel work in an area that most people would not associate with genetic research.
You may be familiar with the hit reality TV show on the TLC network called 'The Little Couple'. This show features Bill Klein and Jen Arnold. Bill and Jen are just like your average newlyweds -- except for the fact that they're both under 4 feet tall. ‘The Little Couple’ is a new series for TLC that follows the couple as they embark on their new life together.
Beckman Coulter Genomics has developed a new version of their DNAdvance System specifically for use with DNA Genotek’s Oragene samples. DNAdvance SP, from Beckman Coulter Genomics, is an extraction kit for the isolation and purification of DNA from saliva samples collected with Oragene self-collection Kits. The high throughput genomic DNA (gDNA) isolation reagent system enables the purification of high quality DNA from saliva samples, making it ideal for genotyping applications (SNP, fragment analysis), sequencing and qPCR. The system provides researchers and laboratories with an optimized and robust solution for DNA extraction and purification from saliva collected with Oragene kits.
A host of familial cancer syndromes have been described in which several members of the same family develop cancer at a young age due to an inherited genetic susceptibility. It has been well established that germline mutations in the DNA sequence of genes that are protective against cancer, including tumour suppressor and DNA repair genes, are the culprit in most familial cases of cancer. Because they are inherited, these germline mutations are present in every cell of the body from conception into adulthood, knocking out one of the two copies of the protective gene. They confer a high risk of cancer development at a young age, although the cancer itself arises when the remaining normally-functioning copy of the gene is knocked out in susceptible tissues due to contributing environmental conditions, taking with it the last remnants of protection it once afforded against cancer. However, for a number of individuals with young-onset cancer, as well as entire families, the inherited defect remains unidentified, which complicates genetic counselling and clinical management of family members. Lynch syndrome is the most common of all family cancer syndromes, in which patients develop a range of cancers, the most frequent of which are colorectal and uterine cancers. Lynch syndrome is usually caused by germline mutations within one of the four genes that encode the mismatch repair system, most commonly MLH1 or MSH2. Loss of protection from the mismatch repair system results in the accumulation of mutations during cell division, and ultimately, cancer ensues. However, in about a third of Lynch syndrome patients, standard genetic screening fails to identify any pathogenic sequence change within the mismatch repair genes that might be responsible for their disease.
At the department of Anthropology and Genetics Institute at the University of Florida, we study genetic variation in modern human populations to answer diverse questions ranging from the route early humans took when they first migrated out of Africa to the underlying causes of racial differences in susceptibility to complex diseases. To explore these varied aspects of human evolutionary history, we spend a lot of time figuring out how to collect DNA from a large number of volunteers. With today's genetic technology, all that's necessary is to obtain a small blood or saliva sample from each of our participants -- a task relatively easy to do in concept but quite a bit more challenging in practice.