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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.


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How do researchers know when there is a problem in a gene?
     Belen Hurle, Ph.D.: Generating data for use in developing and refining computational tools for comparing genomic sequence from multiple vertebrate species. Good question! Sometimes the problem causes a very obvious condition, such an physical abnormality or a metabolic illness. Sometimes the problem is very subtle and goes unnoticed. In some instances, the researcher knows something is wrong, but they don't know what gene is defective yet. However, if the problem has been well researched there could be a clinical test available that can be run to confirm what gene is responsible for the problem.
Flint Northern Academy in MI (11th grade student)


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