What is genomics and post genomics?

Genomics encompasses everything from sequencing genomes, ascribing functions to genes, and studying the structure of genes (gene architecture).

Post-genomics takes these techniques further,  studying patterns in how genes are transcribed into messenger RNA, the chemical that carries the instructions for forming proteins (transcriptomics), in the way genes are expressed as proteins (proteomics), and in how they influence the chemicals that control our cellular biochemistry and metabolism (metabolomics).

By studying an individual’s entire genome, we can see which genes are active at particular times and under different environmental conditions, and see how these affect outward characteristics.

The United States is a major center for genomics research and development, which means many professionals from overseas study and work in genomics in America.

For more information, please visit the National Human Genome Research Institute and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention genomics page.

For more information, Please visit: nerc.ac.uk

Genes and Blood Type

Blood is a complex, living tissue that contains many cell types and proteins. A transporter, regulator, and defender, blood courses through the body carrying out many important functions. Distinct molecules called agglutinogens are attached to the surface of red blood cells. There are two different types of agglutinogens, type “A” and type “B”. Each type has different properties. The ABO blood type classification system uses the presence or absence of these molecules to categorize blood into four types: A, B, AB, and O.
The A and B antigen molecules on the surface of red blood cells are produced by two different enzymes. These two enzymes are encoded by different versions, or alleles, of the same gene: A and B. The A and B alleles code for enzymes that produce the type A and B antigens respectively. A third version of this gene, the O allele, codes for a protein that is not functional and does not produce surface molecules. Two copies of the gene are inherited, one from each parent.
Blood plasma is packed with proteins called antibodies. The body produces a wide variety of antibodies that will recognize and attack foreign molecules that may enter from the outside world. A person’s plasma does not contain any antibodies that will bind to molecules that are part of his or her own body.

When conducting a blood transfusion, it is important to carefully match the donor and recipient blood types. If the donor blood cells have surface molecules that are different from those of the recipient, antibodies in the recipient’s blood recognize the donor blood as foreign. This triggers an immune response resulting in blood clotting. If the donor blood cells have surface molecules that are the same as those of the recipient, the recipient’s body will not see them as foreign and will not mount an immune response.

There are two special blood types when it comes to blood transfusions. People with type O blood are universal donors because there are no molecules on the surface of the red blood cells that can trigger an immune response. People with type AB blood are universal recipients because they do not have any antibodies that will recognize type A or B surface molecules.

The Personal Genome Project

Genetic research has taken a completely new direction with the personal genome project. Researcher put together this privately funded project for genetic advancement. General public volunteers can work together with scientists in sharing personal information and genome sequence with the public as well as researchers. The aim of this program is to better understand environmental and genetic contributions to traits and ailments in humans.
Information gained from volunteers is used to advance knowledge of human origin, human biology, and advancement of medicines. Many individuals may want to know their genome sequence and it is made possible with this program.
The mission of the personal genome project is the development of genome technology with responsibility and improvable benefits with a manageable amount of risk. This program is available to any members of the public and results are made public. Researcher of the personal genome program will:
• Develop the necessary tools for interpreting genomic information and correlate it with the related biological and personal information.
• Develop dialog with government and public bodies who have an interest in genetic research and personal genomics, research industries and communities in relation to social, legal, and ethical issues.
• They will develop technologies in improving accessibility of personal genome sequencing.
• Recruit only individuals who are interested in openly sharing and obtaining their personal genome sequence. Share their related physical and health information and willing to share their experiences with researchers and the public on an ongoing basis.
• Providing of informational and educational resources for overall improvement and understanding the potential of human personal genomics.
• Developing a broad vision in explaining to all interested parties how personal genome knowledge can be used in management and understanding of human health and related issues such as serious diseases.
• Promotion of collaboration and openness from the start of the program in order to gain trust and understanding.

Genetic Research Job Opportunities

Genetic research jobs cover a wide field of diverse jobs and varying salaries. This article looks at some of the different jobs in the genetic research field and job descriptions.
• Genetic Counselor – this position requires involvement in client education regarding available testing options as well as clinical aspects and technical aspects if molecular-based assays. A genetic counselor attends national genetics meetings in genetic advancements as guest speaker, exhibitor, and attendee. Qualifications for this position include Master’s degree in genetic counseling, post-graduate genetic counseling or equivalent and ongoing education.
• Clinical Research Associate – position requires monitoring of activities at clinical studies sites in assuring adherence to federal regulations, study protocols, standards of procedures and good clinical practices. Qualifications include BS/BA in scientific or healthcare discipline, understanding of medical terminology, and problem-solving techniques in ever changing environment.
• Research Technician – Cancer Biology and genetics – candidates must assist experienced investigators in the performance of vivo and vitro studies. Candidates must have animal experience, very good molecular biology skills such as in the areas of molecular cloning, protein techniques, RNA, DNA, and tissue culture skills. Performing of cell culture assays and stocks of cell lines. Qualifications are BA/BS as well as research experience, which includes molecular biology. Experience with mice and tissue culture.
• Crop genetics R&D Specialist – this position requires processing of samples and optimizing protocols focuses on sequencing and genotyping technologies. Providing of genotyping and sequence data. Provide support for tracking, sampling and crossing of plants in greenhouse.
• Human Genetics counselor – candidate must provide clinical care, contribute towards clinical genetic research, support clinical laboratory by using basic genetic counseling skills. Job qualifications are master’s degree in genetic counseling or equivalent. Participate in case reports, clinical trials, registry work, recruitment of participants, managing IRB, participating in research committees.

Genetically Modified Foods

Genetic research does not stop with humans and the inner workings of our system and the impact of genes in health etc. Genetically modified foods are becoming a reality in our everyday lives. It is straight from a science fiction script or so it appears, as we often wonder about the foods only available in science fiction movies, but that is not our reality or that is how we thought.
Biotech companies, retailers and large producers are driven by commercial interest to push for the acceptance of genetically modified foods. We are all for genetic advancement, but many would like to draw the line where it comes to our food. Researchers and scientist has recently shown the world’s first genetically modified Aquabounty Salmon. It is the first fish with altered genes and grows twice as fast as a normal fish.
There are obviously those in favour of genetically modified food such as the fish as they insist it is necessary for the growing population in order to feed everyone. Others who are definitely not opposed to genetic research, but just concerned for the safety of these foods for human consumption, environmental damage and animal cruelty, are against genetically modified foods.
Genetic research are not at early stages yet in regards to the fish as the “new” Aquabounty salmon is indeed the wild Atlantic salmon which was injected with a gene from a fish called Ocean eelpout as well as a growth hormone from a Chinook salmon.
This new Aquabounty salmon is intended for raising on land in tanks as soon as they are commercially produced, but environmentalists are worried that they will definitely end up in oceans and river. The problem is not only that of this specific fish, but the fact that all sorts of genetic research are done on different types of animals, which are currently fit for human consumption. Nobody wants their lamb injected with the growth hormone of a pig, for example, or do they?

India and Russia Collaborate for Genetic Research

India and Russia confirmed that they entered in research collaboration with the Institute of Atherosclerosis Research in Russia and Frontier Lifeline Hospital in Chennai, because of the increasing cases in strokes and cardiac ailments. Experts from Frontier and scientists Russia’s genetics research facility will try to identify which genes are responsible for Atherosclerosis leading to heart attacks and strokes.
Russia and India show uncanny similarity in heart ailments and hope that through genetic advancement and learning from each other they will be able to curb this life-threatening disease. Studies will be done on the narrowing of arteries, reason for cholesterol accumulation in arteries, isolating genes responsible and genetic research to manipulate genes in the hope to find effective methods in curbing heart attacks and strokes.
By understanding the genetic aspects of this disease, India and Russia both hope to open up different avenues and new possible ways to prevent and treat heart conditions. Current lifestyles of many people may be a leading cause is the view of many doctors and scientists and therefor heart disease is increasing. A viable solution to curb world-wide deaths is imperative is the consensus. Permanent solutions for strokes and heart attacks are the main aim of this collaboration. Their aim is to find the core gene that is responsible for the accumulation of fat in arteries and they want to manipulate this gene in order to reduce the stroke and heart attack problem significantly.
Russia and India are both very enthusiastic with their partnership and positive that they will have a fruitful relationship through genetic research in the curbing of this deadly disease, which in all respects are increasing daily. An effective cure is what these two nations are hopeful of and we definitely wish them the best in this regard.

Overview of Genetics

Genetic research reveals to researchers everything about DNA, Gene’s, Chromosomes, Protein’s, hereditary diseases and more. Understanding the inner workings, mechanisms and diseases in all living beings are possible through research and genetic advancements.
What is DNA?
DNA is actually a molecule which encodes genetic instruction that is necessary in the functioning and developing of living organisms and viruses. DNA, Proteins and RNA are macromolecules that are essential in all life forms. A DNA molecule consists of two polymers and stores biological information. Within a cell the DNA has structures which are chromosomes and cell division cause chromosomes to duplicate during a DNA replication and each cell will then have its own set of chromosomes.
What is Chromosomes?
Chromosomes are the organized building of protein and DNA found in a cell. Coiled DNA that contains a lot of genes, nucleotide sequences and regulatory elements in a single piece is another description that may be used. DNA-bound protein’s controlling the functions and pack the DNA are also inside a chromosome. A Chromosome can vary between different organisms. A DNA molecule can be linear or circular and composed of 10,000 up to 1,000,000,000 nucleotides in a chain.
What is a Gene?
Genes are distinct portions of cell’s DNA. They are the coded instructions to produce things a body need such as proteins. Genetic research discovered the abilities and capabilities of different genes as well as distinguished that some genes are associated with specific diseases for example, Huntington’s disease and cystic fibrosis.
What is a Protein?
Proteins are the chemical building of amino acids in a chain and the amount of amino acids inside protein can vary from only a handful, to thousands. Proteins are as most people know very important in the growing ability, energy production and digestion inside a body.

Understanding Human Diseases through Genetic Research

Genetic research reports findings of molecular interactions, mutations and genes to understand human disease. A lot of diseases, including cancer, psychiatric illness and cardiovascular diseases arise from interactions between environmental encounters and genetics. Genetic advancements are made by scientists in regards to cancer and breast cancer specifically through research from concept to clinical stages. Advancements are made in the Epigenetics and Chromatin in Cancer and cancer vulnerabilities.
Genetic Disorders are identified in four types, which are Single-gene or monogenic, multifactorial, mitochondrial and chromosomal.
Single-gene disorders are caused by mutations occurring in a gene’s DNA sequence. Genetic research shows that there are over six thousand single-gene disorders and samples are hereditary hemochromatosis, Huntington’s disease, Marfan syndrome, sickle cell anemia and cystic fibrosis.
Multifactorial or complex disorders are a combination of multiple gene mutations and environmental factors. Chronic examples are Alzheimer’s disease, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, cancer, diabetes and arthritis.
Mitochondrial is quite rare and caused by no chromosomal DNA mutations of mitochondria.
Chromosomal a combination of protein and DNA chromosomes develop abnormalities.
Genetic advancements allows for consumers to do their own genetic testing. The tests range from drug responses, disease risk, tests of ancestry and more. With genetic research so complex a field, consumers looking for a genetic testing company and product they can trust can be a daunting experience.
Looking for the right company, take into consideration its legitimacy through consumer watchdogs and reviews. The chosen company must allow downloading of raw genotypes after testing. Direct genetic research tests to consumers should be treated as informative and not diagnostically and if any doubt arise result must be followed up with experts.
A reputable company will provide a result print-out, which can be examined and if necessary presented to clinicians as general doctors may find complex information from a genome scan difficult.

Training and Career Opportunities in Genetic Research

The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) receives applications online for their fellowship positions. The Institute combined with America Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) offer genetic professionals a variety of assignments which will relate to a scientific policy career. This program is designed for genetic research professionals with advanced degrees and at the start of their new career. Development of genetic health and implementation of genetic health as well as research policies at national level are available to successful applicants. The compensation package is $60 thousand annually plus benefits with a duration of 16 months, for the fellowship.
The John Hopkins University is open to students in several genetic research and genetic advancements programs. Some of the areas covered include:
• Gene therapy
• Retroviral biology and disease roles
• Molecular analysis in chromosomal aberrations
• Cellular differentiation regulation
• Molecular mechanisms in evolutionary divergence
• Molecular pathogenesis and basis of inborn errors
• Molecular regulation in X chromosome activity
• Dosage compensation
• Environment-gene interaction
A student with a Genetics Major has a diverse field of career opportunities such as communication, criminology and agriculture. A career in genetic research covers various fields of wildlife biology, agriculture and science and careers in research can be one of the following:
Veterinary medicine – Will require a bachelor’s degree in biology, genetics, biomedical science and related fields in needed. Popular employment include: medical research facilities, biotechnology companies, animal breeders, universities and more.
Statistical genetics – A statistical geneticist can follow statistics, mathematics, computer science, physics and statistical genetics. A biology undergraduate degree followed by statistic courses at a graduate school is another route to be followed for statistical geneticist’s careers. Employment opportunities include: pharmacogenomics companies, pharmaceutical companies, biotechnological companies, epidemiology and biostatistics departments, genomic and genetic health centers and more.
Microbiology – Microbial genetics requires an advanced science degree for decent research opportunities. Career opportunities include diagnostic laboratories, agricultural industry, pharmaceutical companies, universities, medical centers and government agencies.

Biotech in the Household

Biotech has changed considerably from the historical uses in agriculture and food science, mainly due to molecular techniques. However, gene technology applied to traditional processes, like winemaking, allows more control over the outcome.

  • Explore the Diversity
  • Agricultural Biotechnology
  • Enzyme Products in Everyday Life
  • Food Biotechnology


Types of RNA
Lots of new research is being done using miRNA and siRNA, as small molecule treatments for various diseases. As a result, these small RNA pieces have become very popular topics in biotech, but for those of you who aren’t all that familiar with the nucleic acids, there are three major types of RNA within cells. The micro/si RNAs come from one of them, called messenger RNA (mRNA). Here’s the lowdown on the three types of larger RNA particles:

mRNA – are the direct product of transcription from DNA. Resulting mRNA sequences contain the codes, and are the template, for production of proteins in our cells.
rRNA – Ribosomal RNA come in various sizes that, combined, form complexes that promote translation of mRNA sequences to make proteins.

tRNA – Transfer RNA are small hairpin-shaped particles that carry around an amino acid at one end and have the anti-codon to an mRNA codon, at the other end. Individual tRNA bind to mRNA one at a time along the strand and, with the help of rRNA, ‘transfer’ their amino acid to the growing peptide chain.

For more information, please visit: about.com

US Universities for Masters in Biotechnology

  • University of Wisconsin – Madision – M.S. Biotechnology
  • California State University – Channel Islands – M.S. biotechnology and Bioinformatics, M.S. Biotechnology and MBA Dual Degree
  • University of Maryland University College – M.S. Biotechnology ( No GRE Required)
  • Georgetown University – M.S. Biotechnology, M.S. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (GRE Not Required)
  • Northeastern University – PSM Biotechnology
  • Indiana University School of Medicine – M.S. Biotechnology – GRE Scores Not required
  • John Hopkins University – M.S. Biotechnology/MBA
  • University of Rhode Island – M.S. Clinical Laboratory Science GRE Not Required ( Biotechnology, Cytopathology, Clinical Laboratory Science). M.S., PhD Cell and Molecular Biology tracks (Biochemistry, Microbiology, Molecular Genetics) GRE Required
  • University of Florida – M.S./MBA Biotechnology
  • University of Texas at Dallas – Masters in Biotechnology ( Molecular and Cell Biology )
  • Marywood University – Masters in Biotechnology, PSM program (GRE Not required)
  • University of Central Florida – M.S. Biotechnology – GRE Scores Required
  • Roosevelt University –  is a special health plan for the non US citizens visiting the US. M.S. in Biotechnology and Chemical Science
  • University of the Sciences in Philadelphia – M.S. Cell Biology and Biotechnology – GRE Scores Not Required
  • East Carolina State University – M.S. Cell Biology and Biotechnology – GRE Scores Required
  • Texas Tech University – M.S. biotechnology – GRE 1100+
  • University of Buffalo – State University of New york – Masters in Biotechnology
  • Polytechnic University of New York – M.S. Biotechnology
  • University of Houston at Clear Lake – M.S. biotechnology (Molecular Biology, Cell Biology)

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