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Category Archives: Genetics

Genesis and Genetics | We look at Genetics in Genesis

Posted: August 26, 2017 at 9:41 am

One lingering mystery concerning Noahs ark is: How many animals were on board? Since DNA has a very good reputation for solving mysteries in the courtroom, now its time to unleash its powers and reveal Noahs passenger list. As we look about the earth we see a multitude of animals reproducing after their kind, each retaining their distinction as a kind/specie. How does this happen? Two things are required for kinds/species to remain distinct: (1) They must have the desire (instincts coded in their DNA) to mate with their own kind/species and (2) They must have the ability (compatible DNA) to produce viable offspring like themselves. These two requirements are the basis for both the Biblical and secular scientific definition of species/kinds. The words species and kinds are synonyms, but usually species is used by the secular scientific community and kinds is used by the Biblical community. Nonetheless, both words should define the same creatures, and our conclusion is that they do. Our position is as follows: Fundamentally, all of the species currently defined by modern science were on the Ark Consider humans, we have the desire and ability to produce more humans like ourselves. We know that we cannot … Continue reading

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Heritability of IQ – Wikipedia

Posted: at 9:41 am

Research on heritability of IQ infers, from the similarity of IQ in closely related persons, the proportion of variance of IQ among individuals in a study population that is associated with genetic variation within that population. This provides a maximum estimate of genetic versus environmental influence for phenotypic variation in IQ in that population. "Heritability", in this sense, "refers to the genetic contribution to variance within a population and in a specific environment".[1] In other words, heritability is a mathematical estimate that indicates how much of a traits variation can be attributed to genes. There has been significant controversy in the academic community about the heritability of IQ since research on the issue began in the late nineteenth century.[2]Intelligence in the normal range is a polygenic trait, meaning it's influenced by more than one gene.[3][4] The general figure for the heritability of IQ, according to an authoritative American Psychological Association report, is 0.45 for children, and rises to around 0.75 for late teens and adults.[5][6] In simpler terms, IQ goes from being weakly correlated with genetics, for children, to being strongly correlated with genetics for late teens and adults. The heritability of IQ increases with age and reaches an asymptote … Continue reading

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Magnetothermal Genetics: A Fourth Tool in the Brain-Hacking Toolbox – IEEE Spectrum

Posted: at 9:41 am

A scientist wanting to hack into an animals brain used to have three different tools to choose from: electriccurrent, drugs, and light. Now theres a fourth: magnetic fields. In a paper published last week in the open-access journal eLife, scientists at the University at Buffalo used magneto-thermal genetics to manipulate brain cells in mice, enabling the researchers to control the animals behavior. Magneto-thermal genetics has been previously shownto activate neurons in anesthetized rodent brains, but this is the first time anyone hasreported using the tool to manipulate animal behavior, says Arnd Pralle, the University at Buffalo biophysicist who led the research. Brain hacking tools help scientists better understand the wiring of the brainthe arrangement of neural circuits and which onescontrol different movements and behaviors. These tools could someday lead to the development of artificial human eyes and ears, or treatments for paralysis,traumatic brain injury, and diseases such as Parkinsons and depression. Over the past few years, major funding agencieshave encouraged scientists and bioengineers to focus their work on the bodys internal wiring. The U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) and DARPA have been doling out grants for work on both the peripheral and central nervous systems. Engineers play a key … Continue reading

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Genetics for everyone – The Boston Globe

Posted: at 9:41 am

Illustration by cristina span/for the boston globe The Greeks asked their oracles to predict future fortunes and future losses. The Romans studied the entrails of sacrificed animals for similar reasons. In modern-day medicine, though, soothsayers come in the form of genetic tests. Ever since the human genome was sequenced almost 15 years ago, tens of thousands of genetic tests have flooded the marketplace. By analyzing someones DNA, often through a blood sample or cheek swab, these tests promise to foretell whether a patient is prone to certain cancers, blessed with the potential to become a star soccer player, or at an elevated risk of having an opioid addiction. Advertisement These types of genetic tests are finding an eager audience. The North American genetic testing market, already the largest in the world, was worth $11.9 billion in 2016, by one estimate, and is expected to grow at more than 15 percent a year for the foreseeable future. Companies such as LabCorp, which offer genetic tests via doctor recommendations, and the healthcare giant Roche have moved aggressively into the field. The company 23andMe, a household name because of its ancestry tests, sells health-related tests directly to consumers. But for a source of … Continue reading

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Study reveals white nationalists’ reactions when genetics test results challenge their identity – UCLA Newsroom

Posted: at 9:41 am

A new study by UCLA researchers reveals the range of reactions from rejection to reinterpretation to acceptance after white nationalists learn that DNA ancestry test results indicate they may not be as white or European as they previously thought. Thestudy,When Genetics Challenges a Racists Identity: Genetic Ancestry Testing Among White Nationalists, is the work of UCLA researchersAaron Panofskyand Joan Donovan, who presented their findings at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association held Aug. 14, 2017, in Montreal, Canada. Upon receiving genetic evidence of non-white or non-European ancestry, those posting online expend considerable energy to repair identities by rejecting or reinterpreting genetic ancestry testing results, said the researchers, who studied discussion threads on the topic posted on the white nationalist online forum Stormfront. UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs Aaron Panofsky In their study, Donovan and Panofsky, an associate professor with appointments in Public Policy at UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, the Institute for Society and Genetics, and Sociology, looked at more than 3,000 posts in 70 discussion threads on topics related to test reveals. These included posts by individuals who revealed results of non-white/non-European ancestry on Stormfront, a website that requires members to be white or European … Continue reading

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Drilling Down Into Myriad Genetics, Inc. (MYGN) – StockNewsJournal

Posted: at 9:41 am

Myriad Genetics, Inc. (MYGN) is an interesting player in the Services space, with a focus on Research Services. The stock has been active on the tape, currently trading at $29.52, up from yesterdays close by 0.92%. Given the stocks recent action, it seemed like a good time to take a closer look at the companys recent data. Fundamental Analysis This company has been competing with others in the Services space and offers its own combination of interesting factors Myriad Genetics, Inc. (MYGN) currently trades with a market capitalization of $2.03 Billion. That value represents a market adjusting for revenues that have been growing by 7.56 % on a quarterly year/year basis as of the companys last quarterly report. The balance sheet health of any company plays a key role in its ability to meet its obligations and maintain the faith of its investment base. For MYGN, the company currently has $102.4 Million of cash on the books. You can get a sense of how sustainable that is by a levered free cash flow of $100.1 Million over the past twelve months. Generally speaking, earnings are expected to grow in coming quarters. Analysts are forecasting earnings of $0.21 on a per … Continue reading

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YHS Teacher Attends Genetics Workshop – Yankton Daily Press

Posted: at 9:41 am

Sanford Health and Harvard Medical School have collaborated to bring information and education about personal genetics and research to classrooms and communities in Massachusetts and South Dakota. One such program the two facilities have created is the Personal Genetics Education Project (pgEd), which offers workshops that bring awareness and create community understanding about development in genetics and how they affect health. Lindsay Kortan, who teaches ninth-grade physical science at Yankton High School (YHS), jumped at the chance to learn more about genetics by attending the pgEd Genetics and Social Justice Summer Institute in Brockton, Massachusetts this summer. A member of the South Dakota Science Teachers Association, Kortan is also a Sanford ambassador and has done research with the organization for several years. It was through this involvement that she was invited to attend the weeklong pgEd conference. "The setup was them showing (the attendees) their lesson plans, allowing us to experience what type of content is in the lesson and what kind of discussions/questions we might have in the classroom," she explained. "It covered a wide range of things, everything from the eugenics movement to ethics in genetics testing to personal genetics testing." As someone who developed a strong interest … Continue reading

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To Protect Genetic Privacy, Encrypt Your DNA – WIRED

Posted: at 9:41 am

In 2007, DNA pioneer James Watson became the first person to have his entire genome sequencedmaking all of his 6 billion base pairs publicly available for research. Well, almost all of them. He left one spot blank, on the long arm of chromosome 19, where a gene called APOE lives. Certain variations in APOE increase your chances of developing Alzheimers, and Watson wanted to keep that information private. Except it wasnt. Researchers quickly pointed out you could predict Watsons APOE variant based on signatures in the surrounding DNA. They didnt actually do it, but database managers wasted no time in redacting another two million base pairs surrounding the APOE gene. This is the dilemma at the heart of precision medicine: It requires people to give up some of their privacy in service of the greater scientific good. To completely eliminate the risk of outing an individual based on their DNA records, youd have to strip it of the same identifying details that make it scientifically useful. But now, computer scientists and mathematicians are working toward an alternative solution. Instead of stripping genomic data, theyre encrypting it. Gill Bejerano leads a developmental biology lab at Stanford that investigates the genetic roots … Continue reading

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How white supremacists respond when their DNA says they’re not … – PBS NewsHour

Posted: at 9:41 am

A white supremacist wears a shirt with the slogan European Brotherhood at a rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, U.S., August 12, 2017. Photo by Joshua Roberts/Reuters Whether youre a white supremacist, a white nationalist or a member of the alt-right, much of your ideology centers around a simple principle: being white. The creation of a white ethnostate, populated and controlled by pure descendants of white Europeans, ranks high on your priority list. Yet, when confronted with genetic evidence suggesting someone isnt pure blood, as white supremacists put it, they do not cast the person out of online communities. They bargain. A new study from UCLA found when genetic ancestry tests like 23andMe spot mixed ancestry among white supremacists, most respond in three ways to discount the results and keep members with impure genealogy in their clan. Their reactions range from challenging the basic math behind the tests to accusing Jewish conspirators of sabotage. Some argued their family history was all the proof they needed. Or they looked in the mirror and clung to the notion that race and ethnicity are directly visible, which is false. But the real takeaway centers on a new, nuanced pattern within white supremacist groups to redefine … Continue reading

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Increased Confidence Earns Myriad Genetics An Upgrade – Benzinga

Posted: August 19, 2017 at 3:40 am

Deutsche Bank upgraded Myriad Genetics, Inc. (NASDAQ: MYGN), as it believes the risk/reward is now balanced following the company below-consensus sales and earnings per share guidance for 2018. The firm upgraded the rating from Sell to Hold, with the price target at $28. At time of writing, shares of Myriad Genetics were rallying 3.19 percent to $28.75. Analyst Dan Leonard said he was earlier concerned that the Street numbers were too high and didn't sufficiently reflect downside in the company's Hereditary Cancer Testing, or HTC, business, which accounts for 74 percent of the total sales. The company's sales guidance for 2018 was 4 percent below the Street estimates at the midpoint, the analyst noted. See also: August PDUFA Dates: Biotech Investors Stay Tuned To A Month Of Plenty Deutsche Bank believes the price erosion in the core hereditary cancer testing business is likely to be metered post 2019, given that cost of HCT isn't a large portion of spend at any given payer. Additionally, the firm noted that payers have historically used prior authorization as the primary lever to limit genetic testing spend, rather than price. The firm said payers may not prefer discriminating between providers, given the challenge posed … Continue reading

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