Junk DNA … Really?

Update Sept 18, 2012: Recently an article was published in the Wall Street Journal that shows new and more profound uses for ‘Junk DNA’ a term we believe is no longer appropriate. Click here to read the full article.

There have been discussions surrounding so called ‘junk DNA’. What is it really? Can DNA really be considered junk and why was this term used to describe non-coding DNA? We at ConnectMyDNA™ wanted to dispel any rumors about what this truly is.

The term ‘Junk DNA’ was introduced in 1972 by Susumu Ohno, as a provisional label for the portions of a genome sequence for which no discernible function had been identified.

According to an article published in News Medical on Junk DNA, it states that “The term is currently, however, a somewhat outdated concept.”


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The ConnectMyDNA™ Test

The ConnectMyDNA™ test is designed to provide the alleles (alternate forms of a gene) present at the loci used for human identification. The scientific community has developed methods to examine locations in the DNA (loci) that are highly polymorphic in the human population. A total of 13 unlinked loci have been adopted by the forensic community to provide sufficient information to uniquely identify an individual (CODIS). The ConnectMyDNA™ test analyzes the 13 loci and determines the alleles at each locus.

Testing is conducted in a DNA testing laboratory utilizing appropriate testing protocols including positive and negative controls. This DNA Profile is depicted by the Gene Ring™ – a graphic representation of the alleles detected at the 13 loci tested. Since the Gene Ring™ is based on the specific alleles detected at the CODIS core loci, each Gene Ring™ will be different just like each DNA Profile is different (except for identical twins).

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