Could these compounds have helped to spark life on Earth?
Genes are the blueprints of life. Genes control everything from hair color to blood sugar by telling cells which proteins to make, how much, when, and where. Genes exist in most cells. Inside a cell is a long strand of the chemical DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). A DNA sequence is a specific lineup of chemical base pairs along its strand. The part of DNA that determines what protein to produce and when, is called a gene.
First established in 1985 by Sir Alec Jeffreys, DNA testing has become an increasingly popular method of identification and research. The applications of DNA testing, or DNA fingerprinting within forensic science is often what most people think of when they hear the phrase. Popularized by television and cinema, using DNA to match blood, hair or saliva to criminals is one purpose of testing DNA. It is also frequently used for other benefits, like wildlife studies, paternity testing, body identification, and in studies pertaining to human dispersion.While most aspects of DNA are identical in samples from all human beings, concentrating on identifying patterns called microsatellites reveals qualities specific and unique to the individual. During the early stages of this science, a DNA test was performed using an analysis called restriction fragment length polymorphism. Because this process was extremely time consuming and required a great deal of DNA, new methods like polymerase chain reaction and amplified fragment length polymorphism have been employed.The benefits of DNA testing are ample. In 1987, Colin Pitchfork became the first criminal to be caught as a result of DNA testing. The information provided with DNA tests has also helped wrongfully incarcerated people like Gary Dotson and Dennis Halstead reclaim their freedom.
A new study into genetic mutations in thale cress has found that genetic mutations are not totally random.
For the first time, scientists have created a genetic map showing how hydras regenerate their own heads.
Reference Of the many dog DNA tests on the market, which one is right for you and your pet? How do they work, are they accurate, and what can you learn?
Reference Exactly how accurate are DNA tests, and how much can your genetic data really reveal about you? To find out, we asked a molecular biologist.
A new study which analyzed the DNA in a hair sample from iconic Native American leader Sitting Bull has confirmed the identity of his great-grandson.
REFERENCE Find out how to pick the right DNA paternity test for you and the facts about how genetic paternity testing works
REFERENCE Discover how to protect your DNA data and clue up on how genetic testing companies might use your information.