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CONTENTS Issue #612
Book Review: Human Genes and Neoliberal Governance - A Foucauldian Critique
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New telomere tests do not predict when you will die, but you may still want the information
20 June 2011 - by Dr Susan Kelly
The world of genetically predicted futures has recently been joined by a test for what is advertised as ‘biological age’. The test promises to provide information about the rate at which one is ageing – and knowing when you will die would make planning for the future so much easier!... [Read More]
Missing the point? Human rights, prisoners and artificial insemination
20 June 2011 - by Dr Mary Yarwood
The anger generated by the knowledge that in the UK only one prisoner since 2007 has been granted access to artificial insemination (AI) shows there is very little public support for prisoners starting a family while behind bars... [Read More]
Scientists discover new way to reverse genetic defects
20 June 2011 - by Dr Rebecca Hill
Scientists have discovered a way to bypass the type of mutation that causes about a third of human genetic diseases. Experiments in yeast have shown how chemical modifications can allow a cell's machinery to ignore mistakes in DNA known as nonsense mutations... [Read More]
Has personalised medicine arrived? Genome scan used to identify rare condition
20 June 2011 - by Ruth Pidsley
US scientists have reported possibly the first example of using one person's genetic sequence to refine a diagnosis and provide personalised medical treatment. Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) helped pinpoint defects in the DNA of 14-year-old fraternal twins Noah and Alexis Beery causing their rare neurological condition, dopamine-responsive dystonia (DRD)... [Read More]
Thinking of cheating? Don't blame it on your genes just yet
20 June 2011 - by Dr Kimberley Bryon-Dodd
Female cheating may be a byproduct of genetic variants that promote cheating in males, according to a new study on zebra finches. Paired-up male finches who tried cheating with other females had the same genetic variants as female finches who were more prone to cheating.... [Read More]
Study finds new genes linked to migraine
20 June 2011 - by Chris Chatterton
Scientists have carried out a large genome-wide association study (GWAS) looking into SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) potentially associated with migraine and have discovered three new genes that may be associated with the condition... [Read More]
Study highlights variation in human mutation rates
20 June 2011 - by Dr Sarah Spain
In the first direct measure of new mutation rates in humans, researchers have found that when parents pass their genes down to their children an average of 60 mutations are introduced into the genetic code during the process... [Read More]
Going grey? Forget dyeing, reach for the stem cells
20 June 2011 - by Antony Starza-Allen
A protein active in immature pigment-producing skin cells could be responsible for hair colouring, according to US scientists. The findings about melanocyte stem cells (MSCs) may explain why hair turns grey and could provide insight into melanocyte-related diseases, such as melanoma... [Read More]
Stem cell trial to treat blindness launched in US
20 June 2011 - by Dr Rebecca Robey
Two clinical trials to test whether embryonic stem cells can treat two incurable eye disorders have been launched in the USA. Twenty-four patients will be treated during the trials at the Jules Stein Eye Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)... [Read More]
Mother to donate womb to her daughter
20 June 2011 - by MacKenna Roberts
A British woman has agreed to donate her womb to her daughter if selected for an experimental womb transplant surgery to be performed by doctors at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.... [Read More]
Book Review: Human Genes and Neoliberal Governance - A Foucauldian Critique
20 June 2011 - by Stevienna de Saille
Arising from Dr Antoinette Rouvroy's doctoral research, Human Genes and Neoliberal Governance was originally published as a hardback in 2008, but has only recently become available in a paperback edition affordable to the general reader. In between those two dates much has happened in the field of genetics and governance, both globally and in the UK... [Read More]

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