Tuesday, August 16, 2005

[geek] 30-second science blogging - epigenomics

Epi-what? Epigenomics:
As scientists discover more about the "epigenome," a layer of biochemical reactions that turns genes on and off, they're finding that it plays a big part in health and heredity. By mapping the epigenome and linking it with genomic and health information, scientists believe they can develop better ways to predict, diagnose and treat disease. [...] The epigenome can change according to an individual's environment, and is passed from generation to generation. It's part of the reason why "identical" twins can be so different, and it's also why not only the children but the grandchildren of women who suffered malnutrition during pregnancy are likely to weigh less at birth.
In keeping with other trends in research, it's looking more and more like your DNA is a mix of hard 'n fast rules, touchy-feely heuristics and quick 'n dirty suggestions. A lot like life itself... Gee, I wonder why that is? (Anyone who suggests 'Cosmic Designer' will be flogged with a rubber chicken.)


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