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CA115 Personal Genomics

What was this lecture about?

This lecture was a long discussion about our evolving history-in-the-making, with modern and ancient human genomes, and the long and richly-varied history relating with human genomes.

Speculation

The lecture began with a discussion of Kalenjin Kenyan runners and the peak performance of their tribes over time, questioned as to the cause of each of these factors.
An example of such factors would be the winning medals of the world championship running since 1983.
It seems prevalent that so many could come from Kenya, and some would speculate on the role of tribal genetics as to the outcome.
One such genetic mutation responsible could be the α-actinin-3 (ACTN3), which is associated with 'high velocity muscle contractions', which aides running performance.
Mutations such as these are in high demand to be discovered for potential study, for finding the very ones that are responsible for good running performance.

Differing Opinions

Others dispute the above, saying that things such as the general income of a host country plays a higher role, leading to less incentives to get cardiovascular exercise.

DNA Market Privacy & Legal Risks

The rest of the lecture is of legal and privacy-orientated issues surrounding so-called 'DNA-Stealers'.
These organisations and individuals offer incentives to clients to share their DNA information, while the real motivations may lie with using this data for data-mining and individual profiling for use in Insurance companies.


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