Human Genome: The New Frontier in Scientific Research
California Academy of Sciences - California Academy of Sciences
Dr. Holly Dunsworth explains how your genome is showing, and she explores why human origins is getting personal.
First we glimpsed our reflected faces, then our cells in microscopes, then our bodies in photographs, and then our bones in x-rays. Now we can see inside our genomes to find things like earwax alleles, Parkinson's disease risk, warfarin response risk, ancient maternal haplogroups, and even Neanderthal genes. But personal genomics isn't just high-tech navel-gazing; it's a powerful tool for grasping human evolutionary biology.
Once the technology becomes good enough and the price comes down far enough nearly everyone will have access to this high-resolution fascination with ourselves, our origins, and our evolution. As it enters the mainstream, personal genomics conjures intriguing new questions about its potential impact on our species, like, how will it change public perception of the science of human evolution and humanity's place in nature? How will it affect personal identities and species perspectives? How will it shape conceptions of our future evolution?