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Articles on DNA

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Alzheimer’s, like many diseases, has a genetic component. Tek Images/Science Photo Library via Getty Images

Mixed-ancestry genetic research shows a bit of Native American DNA could reduce risk of Alzheimer’s disease

Using a technique called admixture mapping, researchers can leverage the diversity of people with mixed ancestry to look for hard-to-find genetic risk factors for diseases like Alzheimer’s disease.
All 129 men who embarked on the Franklin expedition died. DNA analysis is being used to identify the remains. (Shutterstock)

DNA analysis reveals the identity of a member of the doomed Franklin Arctic expedition

129 officers and crew died during the 1845 Franklin Northwest Passage expedition. DNA analysis from their remains of members can reveal the identity of the men who perished during the journey.
Anything that moves or processes tiny amounts of fluid is a microfluidic device. Chris Neils/Albert Folch

Microfluidics: The tiny, beautiful tech hidden all around you

Electronics are not the only technology to have been miniaturized. Using the strange behavior of fluids in tiny spaces, microfluidic devices are critical to medicine, science and the modern world.
A simple two-dimensional grid can convey a lot of information – whether making pictures with Lite-Brite or storing data in DNA. Justin Day/Flickr

DNA ‘Lite-Brite’ is a promising way to archive data for decades or longer

DNA has been storing vast amounts of biological information for billions of years. Researchers are working to harness DNA for archiving data. A new method uses light to simplify the process.
A complete human genome, seen here in pairs of chromosomes, offers a wealth of information, but it is hard connect genetics to traits or disease. HYanWong/Wikimedia Comons

Scientists are on a path to sequencing 1 million human genomes and use big data to unlock genetic secrets

The first full human genome was sequenced 20 years ago. Now, a project is underway to sequence 1 million genomes to better understand the complex relationship between genetics, diversity and disease.
MRNA is an important messenger, carrying the instructions for life from DNA to the rest of the cell. ktsimage/iStock via Getty Images Plus

What is mRNA? The messenger molecule that’s been in every living cell for billions of years is the key ingredient in some COVID-19 vaccines

Recently in the spotlight for its role in the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, mRNA is not a new invention. It’s a crucial messenger molecule at work every day in every cell in your body.
Gene-based vaccines had never been approved for humans before the coronavirus pandemic. Juan Gaertner/Science Photo Library via Getty Images

3 medical innovations fueled by COVID-19 that will outlast the pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has driven a lot of scientific progress in the past year. But just as some of the social changes are likely here to stay, so are some medical innovations.

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