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CONTENTS Issue #517
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Welcome to BioNews by email, published by the Progress Educational Trust, providing you with news, comment and reviews on genetics, assisted conception, embryo/stem cell research and related areas. 


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BSHG welcomes the House of Lords report on Genomic Medicine
19 July 2009 - by Dr Rob Elles
Since 2003, the framework for policy in Genetics in Medicine in the UK has been the Genetic White Paper 'Our Inheritance Our future.' There is no doubt that its implementation helped modernise and broaden the scope of genetics in the National Health Service (NHS). It developed new support structures including the National Genetics Education Development Centre and the National Genetic Reference Laboratories, and established the (short lived) Genetic Knowledge Parks.... [Read More]
From 'Genomic Medicine' to the new horizon of epigenetics
20 July 2009 - by Sandy Starr
From our perspective at the Progress Educational Trust (PET), one of the most welcome aspects of the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee's new report 'Genomic Medicine' is its consideration of public engagement issues. This section of the report appears to anticipate and complement PET's plans for its 2009 annual conference, entitled 'Does Genetics Matter? Help, Hype and the New Horizon of Epigenetics', which will take place in East London on Wednesday 18 November.... [Read More]
Genetic link between skin cancer and moles found
12 July 2009 - by Dr Will Fletcher
New genetic evidence indicates that people with a greater number of moles have an increased risk of developing melanoma, the rarest but most dangerous of the three types of skin cancer. Having a large number of moles is well known to be a prominent skin-cancer risk-factor, but this is the first time a genetic basis for the link has been discovered. A consortium of European and Australian scientists compared some 300,000 genetic variants or'snips'(SNPs, or single nucleotide ... [Read More]
Scientists target rogue RNAs to correct muscular dystrophy in mice
19 July 2009 - by Dr Rebecca Robey
US scientists have used a new technique to treat a type of muscular dystrophy in mice. The new method, published in the journal Science, targets the genetic mechanism underlying the disease and was found to improve muscle function and reverse the long term degenerative effects of the condition.... [Read More]
World’s oldest IVF mother dies from cancer two years after giving birth
20 July 2009 - by Antony Starza-Allen
The world’s oldest mother has died from cancer aged 69. María Carmen del Bousada de Lara, from Spain, gave birth to twins two years ago through IVF... [Read More]
Lowest price public DNA testing launched in US
19 July 2009 - by Sarah Pritchard
A venture-backed US start-up company ‘Pathway Genomics' announced its launch last week, and is promising to provide the most comprehensive DNA analysis publicly available; for the lowest price.... [Read More]
Most aren’t worried by Alzheimer’s gene risk test results, study shows
19 July 2009 - by Adam Fletcher
Findings published last week suggest that people are not troubled upon learning they are at higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Writing in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers at the Boston University School of Medicine, US, led by Dr Robert Green, measured participants’ anxiety levels following results of a genetic test. The paper arrives amidst debate on how harmful direct-to-customer genetics testing - offered by companies such as 23andMe and DeCodeMe - might actuall... [Read More]
Children mimic parents to become obese; genes only partly to blame
20 July 2009 - by Ailsa Stevens
Eating habits taught to children by the parent of their same gender could have a stronger influence over childhood obesity than genetic makeup, according to a new study reposted in the International Journal of Obesity. Researchers from Peninsular Medical School, Plymouth, UK, showed that obese mothers were ten times more likely to have overweight daughters, while obese fathers were six times as likely to have overweight sons. The pattern was restricted to parents of the same sex as their ... [Read More]

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