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Predict What Your Future Children Look Like In 'Virtual Embryos'

Remember those slightly horrifying sites that mash up two faces to tell you what your hypothetical babies might look like? With genome sequencing and “virtual embryos”, we might actually be able to do that — using science. Those days are not quite here yet, but New Scientist has an intriguing report about a company called GenePeeks. We already screen for common genetic disorders by testing the DNA of prospective parents.

The World's Oldest Tumour Is 11,000 Years Old And Spread By Dog Sex

Somewhere 11,000 years ago, something weird happened to a dog. It got cancer — and the really damn freaky part is that the cancer could survive even outside of its canine host. That unknown dog is long dead now, but its tumour cells have improbably lived on, continuing to sprout on the genitalia of dogs all over the world.

Why We Need To Think Differently About Our Genomes

If — like most of us — your entire understanding of DNA and genetics can be traced back to CSI reruns, you’re probably under the impression that your genome is unique; that it defines you completely. But scientists increasingly believe that’s not that case. In fact, we need to start thinking about our genomes differently.

A Miracle Drug Keeps This 70-Year-Old Cancer Patient Running Marathons

Don Wright was diagnosed with myeloma — cancer in his blood cells and bone marrow — two weeks after running his first marathon. His doctor gave him a five-year survival estimate. Eight years later he has run 59 26.2-mile races in 41 states and takes just one pill per day to keep his cancer at bay.

In The Future, You Could Be Bumping Smartphones Before Bumping Uglies

There’s a fascinating report over at SMH today by Steve Dow talking about Australian geneticist Richard Cotton, who wants to live in a world where each person carries around their genome sequence in their mobile phones. Then, when it comes time for users to think about getting the groove on to procreate, a simple bump of the smartphones will dictate whether or not your offspring could be negatively impacted by your combined faulty genes. Who said romance was dead?

Got $US50,000? You Can Buy Yourself A Personal DNA Sequencing Machine

DNA sequencing technology isn’t exactly accessible; a typical sequencing machine can easily cost $US500,000. A startup called Ion Torrent aims to change that with a desktop sequencing machine for just $US50,000.

Big Data, Big Problems: The Trouble With Storage Overload

We collect an astonishing amount of digital information. But as the Economist recently pointed out, we’ve long since surpassed our ability to store it all. Big data is here, and it’s causing big problems.

That's A Bad Cough, Let's Examine Your Genome

In 2003, we mapped the human genome, the 20,000-ish genes we all share. It cost $US3 billion. Today, you can literally spit in a cup, place the saliva in the mail and get a peek at your own genome.

Scientists Mapping Out 10,000 Animal Genomes For "Genetic Zoo"

On the tail-end of news that all of the HIV genome and 98% of the pig genome has been decoded, scientists are announcing that they’ve got a plan to collect and sequence the DNA of 10,000 vertebrate species.

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