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Serving Huntington’s Disease One Dog at a Time

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By Olivia Burns (guest blogger) Bob’s foot shook with the thoughtless determination characteristic of Huntington’s Disease. His uncontrolled movement was erratic and unstoppable—that is, until Exeter rested his head on the jerking foot with equal unconsciousness. Completely disregarding the abnormality of the situation, Exeter calmed the rogue appendage… I listened as Nila openly and eloquently […]

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Me and my faulty gene

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In honor of breast cancer awareness month, we are proud to share one young woman’s personal journey to uncover the roots of her family tree and face the real possibility of breast cancer in her future. By Sedona Lercara This crazy journey all began nearly twenty years ago with my mom’s first diagnosis with breast cancer. Like […]

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Genetics and Mental Illness

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By Carly Elder (guest blogger) On July 5th 2011, Kelly Thomas, a mentally ill homeless man, was beaten by police officers in a Fullerton parking lot. Five days later Thomas passed away. The beating was captured on camera and the incident sparked a national debate about the use of force by police and the treatment […]

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Breeding for Taste and Losing Nutrients

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By Andrea Tunnard The produce sections of many supermarkets are stocked with large, bright, flavorful fruits and vegetables.  The shelf appeal of these vibrant fruits and vegetables, coupled with the convenience of options like seedless grapes and watermelons, is due to artificial selection and other plant breeding techniques.  Most consumers don’t associate these foods with […]

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Interview: Genetic Testing for Huntington’s Disease, and a Very Personal Decision

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By Nazin Sedehi and Laura Rivard Introduction A few months ago, we posted a case study on our Nature Scitable site about “Scott”, a man who tests positive for the genetic mutation that causes Huntington’s disease (HD). Soon after receiving his test results, Scott learns that his wife is pregnant. He and his wife decide […]

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A Little Too Perfect: 23andMe’s Patent on “Designer Baby” Technology

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By Andrea Tunnard Couples planning on starting a family in our modern age of genetic technology have options that no previous generation of prospective parents have had before: the opportunity to have their genetic information tested in order to predict what traits their children will inherit.  The companies that provide this service specialize in “ […]

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Illegal Sterilizations in California Prisons

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By Saxony Busta In an audit released in June 2014, it was confirmed that at least 39 women were illegally sterilized in California prisons from 2006 to 2013. Nearly 150 women prisoners underwent surgical procedures for sterilization by bilateral tubal litigation, commonly known as having one’s “tubes tied”. An investigation revealed that proper consent for […]

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