Insight: New DNA reader to bring promise
Over the last few weeks, there have been significant steps forward towards reaching the goal of the $1,000 personal genome. Ion Torrent announced advancements in technology "1,000 times more powerful than existing technology" that make this milestone appear "just around the corner."
Speaking on these technological advances, Dr. Anthony Carter, Laboratory Director at IDENTIGENE said "...The nature of this knowledge has evolved past science fiction and into a realm that impacts humanity on a global scale. DNA testing has changed the way we see nature and particularly, ourselves..."
An ecerpt from the article follows:
"If the cost of whole-genome sequencing gets sufficiently low, you could sequence all the genes in a newborn" for less than the individual tests and follow-ups required when one comes back positive, says Richard Lifton, chairman of the genetics department at Yale University. "I'm increasingly confident that's going to happen. But we need to be careful how we utilize this information. Do you tell a newborn's parents his apoE status" -- that is, whether he has the form of a gene that raises the risk of Alzheimer's disease?
"Each genome has probably 24,000 mutations that we can understand," says Ion Torrent's Rothberg. "But there are probably 400 that have never been seen before" and whose significance for health is an enigma. Ion Torrent is working on algorithms to determine the medical significance of the millions of DNA glitches that will be found in every genome. Companies such as Personalis, of Palo Alto, California, have sprung up to determine the medical significance of whole-genome sequences. That will take years.
"We recognize this is just the beginning," Rothberg says."
To read the full article visit Reuters.com.