DNA of ‘an entire nation’ assessed

iceland

The genetic code of “an entire nation” has effectively been deduced, say researchers in Iceland. The feat was performed by combining DNA data with family trees. The team say they could now find every woman at high-risk of breast cancer “at the touch of a button” and it would be “criminal” not to use the information. The reports, published in the journal Nature Genetics, used the data to make a suite of discoveries including the age of the last common ancestor of men.

DNA is passed from one generation to the next. If you knew everything about the DNA of a child and their grandparents, you could figure out a lot about about the DNA of the parents too. The deCODE genetics team has taken the whole genome sequence of 10,000 people and combined it with nation-wide family trees. “By using these tricks we can predict, with substantial accuracy, the genome of the entire nation,” the chief executive of deCODE, Dr Kari Stefansson told the BBC News website. Via DNA of ‘an entire nation’ assessed

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