Genes and Society in the News:
- Ken Weiss, The GWAS hoax….or was it a hoax? Is it a hoax?, posted on A Mermaid’s Tale blog. Follow-up discussion on the Omnigenic article in Cell which was emailed to the group last meeting.
- Cosimo Posth et al. Deeply divergent archaic mitochondrial genome provides lower time boundary for African gene flow into Neanderthals. Nature. Covered by Carl Zimmer in the New York Times.
- Eric Turkheimer leads a University of Virginia supported and privately funded (John Templeton Foundation) project related to genetics and human behavior. Funding is available both for researchers and journalists http://www.geneticshumanagency.org
- Shipman, S. L. et al. CRISPR–Cas encoding of a digital movie into the genomes of a population of living bacteria. Nature. Shipman along with George Church encoded one of the earliest moving pictures into bacterial DNA sequence and successfully replicated the organisms. Covered by The Guardian.
- July 6, 2017. New Book Is Science Racist? by Jonathan Marks reviewed by Barbara J. King on NPR. Claims that in contrast to creationist thinking, racism in science is alive and well.
- DNA Ancestry and Privacy Guide, a draft of which we read in a previous GSWG meeting, is now published online.
Article for Discussion:
- Omnigenic article described above: Boyle, E. A., Li, Y. I., & Pritchard, J. K. (2017). An Expanded View of Complex Traits: From Polygenic to Omnigenic. Cell,169(7), 1177-1186.
- Group agreed article was very well written and a compelling hypothesis. Figures were included that made it possible to follow the idea without the need to access supplemental materials.
- Novel idea in that the regulation of expression of genes that are core genes for a trait (and somehow implicated in the biological pathway) can be affected through regulation of any gene that is also expressed in the important cell type(s).
- Liked that the authors’ outlined a series of tests of the omnigenic model.
- Still requires massive data collection and large scale sequencing projects which are resource and money intensive.
- Lacked much discussion of environmental variables, both as an explanation for missing heritability and as an alternative way of allocating research dollars in studies of complex disease.
- Wondered what comments were out there in the blog posts and decided to follow-up in a larger group in the July 26th meeting, assigning a Ken Weiss article to read.