Magazine March 23, 2020, Issue

Dime-Store Genomics 

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Genetic testing will soon be cheap, routine, and ubiquitous

Genetics has transformed itself in the 21st century. In the 1990s it was an abstruse and esoteric field, as it had been since its rediscovery in 1900. The public awareness of the topic was often filtered through science fiction, such as the film Gattaca.

The Human Genome Project changed that. In the early years of the 21st century the science came into its own, with genomics taking the study of single genes and applying it to the whole genome (i.e., an individual’s complete sequence of genetic material). Scientists Craig Venter and Francis Collins became celebrities, often seen on the evening news

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