Jan 3, 2008

Glossary of Consumer Genomics


  • a gene is the basic functional unit of heredity. Genes are made up of DNA.


  • the study of a single gene and its effect on human health. For example, a mutation of the CFTR gene causes cystic fibrosis.


  • the study of all human genes, including their interaction with environment factors such as smoking and diet.

Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP):

  • a single basepair variation in the DNA that might differ from person to person. SNPs can be used to profile a person’s genomic information. Currently, up to 2 millions of SNPs can be measured on a single microarray.


  • a technology to measure SNPs or mRNAs.


  • most diseases are caused by the interaction of the genome and the environment.

Genomic Testing:

  • the measurement of a person’s SNPs using microarray or other technologies. Sometimes, it is also called genetic testing in the mass media.

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