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DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is the hereditary material in humans and almost all other organisms. Nearly every cell in a person’s body has the same DNA. Most DNA is located in the cell nucleus (where it is called nuclear DNA), but a small amount of DNA can also be found in the mitochondria (where it is called mitochondrial DNA or mtDNA).

The information in DNA is stored as a code made up of four chemical bases: adenine (A), guanine (G), cytosine (C), and thymine (T). Human DNA consists of about 3 billion bases, and more than 99 percent of those bases are the same in all people. The order, or sequence, of these bases determines the information available for building and maintaining an organism, similar to the way in which letters of the alphabet appear in a certain order to form words and sentences.

DNA bases pair up with each other, A with T and C with G, to form units called base pairs. Each base is also attached to a sugar molecule and a phosphate molecule. Together, a base, sugar, and phosphate are called a nucleotide. Nucleotides are arranged in two long strands that form a spiral called a double helix. The structure of the double helix is somewhat like a ladder, with the base pairs forming the ladder’s rungs and the sugar and phosphate molecules forming the vertical sidepieces of the ladder.

An important property of DNA is that it can replicate, or make copies of itself. Each strand of DNA in the double helix can serve as a pattern for duplicating the sequence of bases. This is critical when cells divide because each new cell needs to have an exact copy of the DNA present in the old cell.
SIPPET study may have implications for treatment of patients with severe hemophilia A

SIPPET study may have implications for treatment of patients with severe hemophilia A

SIPPET, a study which involved 42 centers in 14 countries in Europe, North and South America, Africa and Asia was designed to definitively settle the long-debated question whether factor VIII concentrates from different sources (plasma-derived containing VWF or recombinant technology) differ in risk of inhibitor development in previously untreated children (PUPs) with severe hemophilia A. [More]
PNNL scientists play central role in National Microbiome Initiative

PNNL scientists play central role in National Microbiome Initiative

Scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory are playing a central role as the nation devotes more than $500 million to understand communities of microorganisms and their role in climate science, food production and human health. [More]
New CRISPR-EZ method makes genome editing much easier in mice

New CRISPR-EZ method makes genome editing much easier in mice

University of California, Berkeley scientists have developed a quicker and more efficient method to alter the genes of mice with CRISPR-Cas9, simplifying a procedure growing in popularity because of the ease of using the new gene-editing tool. [More]
Overcoming barriers to move beyond race-based treatment decisions

Overcoming barriers to move beyond race-based treatment decisions

Prescribing certain medications on the basis of a patient's race has long come under fire from those uneasy with using race as a surrogate for biology when treating disease. [More]
NASA releases new video that highlights Mark and Scott Kelly's metabolites

NASA releases new video that highlights Mark and Scott Kelly's metabolites

NASA's Human Research Program is releasing "Metabolomics: You Are What You Eat" video to highlight its Twins Study which uses omics to study Mark and Scott Kelly's metabolites. [More]
Study identifies potential new treatment for subset of gastric cancer patients

Study identifies potential new treatment for subset of gastric cancer patients

Testing cancers for 'addiction' to a gene that boosts cell growth can pick out patients who may respond to a targeted drug under development, a major new study reports. [More]
Researchers discover ANKRD55 gene linked to multiple sclerosis

Researchers discover ANKRD55 gene linked to multiple sclerosis

The Ikerbasque researcher Koen Vandenbroeck, who heads the Neurogenomiks laboratory which reports to the Achucarro centre and the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country, together with other national and international groups, has shown that a genetic variant in the 5q11 chromosome, which is associated with susceptibility to developing multiple sclerosis, greatly regulates a gene known as ANKRD55. ANKRD55 is a gene with an unknown function. [More]
Study finds that TPC2 protein regulates melanin production

Study finds that TPC2 protein regulates melanin production

A year and a half ago, researchers at Brown University found a molecular gas pedal for melanin production. Now they've found a brake. For scientists, the finding deepens not only the basic understanding of how eyes, skin and hair gain color, but also what perhaps can be done in disorders, such as albinism, when that doesn't happen. [More]
Meta-genomics analysis tool Taxonomer can rapidly and accurately detect pathogens

Meta-genomics analysis tool Taxonomer can rapidly and accurately detect pathogens

Scientists at the University of Utah, ARUP Laboratories, and IDbyDNA, Inc., have developed ultra-fast, meta-genomics analysis software called Taxonomer that dramatically improves the accuracy and speed of pathogen detection. [More]
Gene expression patterns of normal tissue may predict survival rates of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer patients

Gene expression patterns of normal tissue may predict survival rates of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer patients

Breast tissue surrounding tumors could be used to gauge future survival outcomes for women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer, a study led by University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers has found. [More]
Novel method for designing geometric structures created from DNA

Novel method for designing geometric structures created from DNA

Among the valuable holdings in London's Wellcome Library is a rough pencil sketch made in 1953 by Francis Crick. The drawing is one of the first to show the double-helix structure of DNA--Nature's blueprint for the design of sea snails, human beings, and every other living form on earth. [More]
TSRI study shows how specific gene mutation promotes growth of aggressive tumors

TSRI study shows how specific gene mutation promotes growth of aggressive tumors

Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have caught a cancer-causing mutation in the act. A new study shows how a gene mutation found in several human cancers, including leukemia, gliomas and melanoma, promotes the growth of aggressive tumors. [More]
High quality exosome research products

High quality exosome research products

AMSBIO has introduced a wide selection of new high quality products for exosome research. Formulated to be quick, affordable and easy to use, AMSBIO's new expanded suite of quantification kits, isolation tools, standards, DNA & RNA extraction kits, antibodies and cell culture reagents will facilitate your understanding of exosomes using a wide variety of samples. [More]
Study shows birth defects in immune system function may contribute to malnutrition

Study shows birth defects in immune system function may contribute to malnutrition

Malnourished children are most likely to die from common infections, not starvation alone, and immune disorder may be part of the cause, according to a review led by Queen Mary University of London. [More]
Oxford researchers discover genes that make children more susceptible to bacteraemia

Oxford researchers discover genes that make children more susceptible to bacteraemia

A team led by Oxford University has identified genes that make certain children more susceptible to invasive bacterial infections by performing a large genome-wide association study in African children. [More]
First large-scale proteogenomic study helps pinpoint genes that drive breast cancer

First large-scale proteogenomic study helps pinpoint genes that drive breast cancer

Building on data from The Cancer Genome Atlas project, a multi-institutional team of scientists has completed the first large-scale "proteogenomic" study of breast cancer, linking DNA mutations to protein signaling and helping pinpoint the genes that drive cancer. [More]
Nutrition, safety tips for grilling season

Nutrition, safety tips for grilling season

Cooking meat, including beef, pork, fish, or poultry, with high-temperature methods such as pan frying or grilling directly over an open flame can increase exposure to chemicals that can cause changes in DNA that may increase the risk of cancer, according to the National Cancer Institute. [More]
Continuous errors in damaged DNA repair may lead to tumor formation

Continuous errors in damaged DNA repair may lead to tumor formation

A group of researchers at Osaka University found that if DNA damage response (DDR) does not work when DNA is damaged by radiation, proteins which should be removed remain instead, and a loss of genetic information can be incited, which, when repaired incorrectly, will lead to the tumor formation. [More]
WPI receives patent for novel method of reprogramming human skin cells

WPI receives patent for novel method of reprogramming human skin cells

Cell therapies for a range of serious conditions, including heart attacks, diabetes, and traumatic injuries, will be accelerated by research at Worcester Polytechnic Institute that yielded a newly patented method of converting human skin cells into engines of wound healing and tissue regeneration. [More]
Study provides better understanding of sequence of genetic events in colorectal cancer premalignancy

Study provides better understanding of sequence of genetic events in colorectal cancer premalignancy

Whole-exome sequencing of both colorectal adenomas (precancers often called polyps) and intestinal mucosa at risk for developing into adenomas from patients with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) has generated a comprehensive picture of the genomic alterations that characterize the evolution of normal mucosa to precancer. [More]
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