by Dr. Hsien-Hsien Lei
Posted August 12, 2007 in Eye on DNA Headlines
Request for Feedback: Do you like these headline round-ups in one post like this? Or would you prefer that each “headline” be an individual post on its own?
- Blaine at The Genetic Genealogist hosts Gene Genie #13: Into The Future.
- Dr. Paul Decelles pens a beautiful poem about the flower Datura and ties it into genetics.
- DNA tests have been used to identify cows that make A2 milk, which is supposedly healthier, safer, and easier to digest. An established product in Australia and New Zealand, about 100 stores in the American Midwest are selling the milk now. Has anyone tried A2 milk?
- New Scientist reports on simulations showing electrically charged dust that form DNA-like double helixes. They act like reproducing living organisms which can store information within the structure and copy itself. Scientists hypothesize that DNA dust helices could be a form of primitive life found in planetary rings containing fine ice grains. Reminds me of the extraterrestrial DNA stories that circulate once in a while.
- Last month, Katherine Bourzac of Technology Review wrote about mapping complex diseases. Researchers calculated the overlap between 161 different diseases and found that schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and autism may be attributable to one set of common genes.
- Mark Henderson of The Times (UK) looks at the intersection between nature and nurture (curiously assigned to the women’s section of the website) as it relates to popular news item of the week – Friendship May Lie in the Genes.
Matt Ridley writes in The Agile Gene:
If personality is created by parents, peers, or society at large, then it is still determined; it is not free.
In some ways the news that our genes are important contributors to our personality should be reassuring: the imperviousness of individual human nature to outside influences provides a bulwark against brainwashing. At least we are determined by our own intrinsic forces rather than somebody else’s.
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