Skip to main content

2008 National DNA Day Online Chatroom Transcript

This is just one question from an archive of the National DNA Day Moderated Chat held in April 2008. The NHGRI Director and many genomics experts from across NHGRI took questions from students, teachers and the general public on topics ranging from basic genomic research, to the genetic basis of disease, to ethical questions about genetic privacy.

Can some people have the same DNA?
     Belen Hurle, Ph.D.: Generating data for use in developing and refining computational tools for comparing genomic sequence from multiple vertebrate species. Identical twins are the only ones that theoretically are born with identical DNA. But even they are not totally identical. While in the womb the environment can be such that they are developing differently. They also accumulate differences at the DNA level due to environmental influence over the years. For instance imagine that one likes to tan and the other doesn't: the one that tans frequently may end up with DNA damage due to ultraviolet light resulting in skin cancer. Did you know that identical twins don't have the same fingerprints?
Shikellamy High School in PA (9th grade student)

< View ALL questions and answers from 2008

(short, single keywords work best at first)