SNPwatch: More Evidence That Genetic Variations are Important for Hepatitis C Infection and Treatment

Unlike the flu virus, which the body is generally able to fight off completely, infection with hepatitis C is often chronic.  That means for most of the three to four million people worldwide who are newly infected each year the virus will persist in the body, where it greatly increases risk for chronic ...

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SNPwatch: Genetic Flaw that Causes Rare Metabolic Condition May Also Increase Risk of Severe Liver Disease in Cystic Fibrosis

New research suggests the primary genetic mutation that causes alpha-1 antritrypsin deficiency, a condition that results in liver damage and a wide variety of other problems, also affects risk for liver disorders associated with cystic fibrosis. Cystic fibrosis is an inherited, childhood-onset disorder ...

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SNPwatch: Genetic Variations May Increase Risk Of Prostate Cancer In Japanese Men

This MRI of a man's pelvis shows that his prostate is enlarged to almost three times the regular size, which may be a sign of cancer. The prostate is marked by a cross. Prostate cancer, the most common cancer to affect men, kills 30,000 men of all ethnicities each year. The disease is known to have a ...

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SNPwatch: Genetic Variations May Increase Risk for ALS

Scientists are narrowing in on two regions of the human genome that could be responsible for ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. ALS is a neurodegenerative disorder that weakens muscles and paralyzes patients within three years of onset, and has no known cure. The ...

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Europe’s First Farmers Came from Afar: New Clues Shed Light on Genetic Ancestry of Modern Europeans

About 10,000 years ago, the prehistoric hunter-gatherers of Europe began meeting some new neighbors. These farmers spread gradually at first, expanding from the Near East through Anatolia and the Balkans. Then agriculture exploded, reaching present-day Britain within a few thousand years. The farmers ...

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SNPwatch: Largest Alzheimer’s Genetic Studies To Date Identify Three New Susceptibility Genes

Despite years of effort and millions of dollars in research funding, only one gene, APOE, has been conclusively associated with Alzheimer's disease risk so far.  But now the results of two of the largest Alzheimer's studies ever provide convincing evidence that three more genes affect risk for the ...

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Surprisingly Skinny Mice Could Point the Way to Obesity and Diabetes Treatments

Scientists who are studying mice with a mutation that makes them resistant to obesity even in the face of a high-fat diet may have identified a new way to treat both obesity and diabetes. Carrying extra weight is known to trigger a state of chronic, low-grade inflammation in the body, which can lead to ...

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What Makes Us Human? Study Finds Hints By Comparing Chimp and Human DNA

We may be another step closer to discovering what makes us human. A new study published online this week in Genome Research has pinpointed three genes in humans that may genetically differentiate us from chimps and other primates. Genetically we are very similar to chimps, so most of the differences ...

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New Study on Genetics of Ethnic Groups Reveals We May Not Be So Different After All

There are many examples around the world of two distinct ethnic groups living side by side. Sometimes these groups co-exist peacefully. Other times they do not. Often two groups' differences - along with circumstantial factors - lead to tension between them and sometimes violence. The Hutus and Tutsis ...

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SNPwatch: Genetic Variation Associated With Addiction In Caucasian Women

Although environment plays a major part in addiction — you can't get hooked on something you've never tried — genetics plays a substantial role in determining whether a person who does use a drug will become addicted to it. A few DNA variations have been identified that seem to increase the odds a person ...

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