Mother Goose tells us that boys are made of "snips and snails and puppy dog tails." She was clearly misinformed about the snails and tails, but she was on to something with the snips. What you really need to build a boy is a "Y" chromosome, and it turns out that SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms), known by the biotech cognoscente as simply "snips," can be helpful in sorting out who fathered the boy. If DNA can be thought of as an instruction book for building a specific person, then SNPs are single letters at an exact location in that book that tend to vary among individuals.
Columns of a DNA gel show the sizes of Y chromosome fragments from 6 male and 1 female sample (empty lane third from right).
A new Standard Reference Material (SRM) issued by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) uses both SNPs and STRs (sections where three to five DNA "letters" form repeating patterns) to help improve the reliability of laboratory analyses of male DNA. The result of several years of research, the standard consists of six vials of very carefully analyzed DNA. Five are male samples, and one is female. Laboratories that perform forensics or paternity DNA analyses can use the SRM to double check the accuracy of their equipment and test procedures for analyzing the Y chromosome. It also may be helpful for population studies that study whether the human race evolved from one or many "Adams."
Each vial comes with certified DNA sequences for 22 different STR locations and 42 different SNPs. NIST research chemist Margaret Kline provided a detailed description of the SRM and the methods used in preparing it at the 14th International Symposium on Human Identification in Phoenix, Ariz., on Oct. 1, 2003.
Gail Porter | EurekAlert!
Biologists unravel another mystery of what makes DNA go 'loopy'
16.03.2018 | Emory Health Sciences
Scientists map the portal to the cell's nucleus
16.03.2018 | Rockefeller University
Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...
On 15 March, the AWI research aeroplane Polar 5 will depart for Greenland. Concentrating on the furthest northeast region of the island, an international team...
The world’s second-largest ice shelf was the destination for a Polarstern expedition that ended in Punta Arenas, Chile on 14th March 2018. Oceanographers from...
At the 2018 ILA Berlin Air Show from April 25–29, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is showcasing extreme high-speed Laser Material Deposition (EHLA): A video documents how for metal components that are highly loaded, EHLA has already proved itself as an alternative to hard chrome plating, which is now allowed only under special conditions.
When the EU restricted the use of hexavalent chromium compounds to special applications requiring authorization, the move prompted a rethink in the surface...
At the ILA Berlin, hall 4, booth 202, Fraunhofer FHR will present two radar sensors for navigation support of drones. The sensors are valuable components in the implementation of autonomous flying drones: they function as obstacle detectors to prevent collisions. Radar sensors also operate reliably in restricted visibility, e.g. in foggy or dusty conditions. Due to their ability to measure distances with high precision, the radar sensors can also be used as altimeters when other sources of information such as barometers or GPS are not available or cannot operate optimally.
Drones play an increasingly important role in the area of logistics and services. Well-known logistic companies place great hope in these compact, aerial...
16.03.2018 | Event News
13.03.2018 | Event News
08.03.2018 | Event News
16.03.2018 | Earth Sciences
16.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
16.03.2018 | Life Sciences