An unborn baby gets its DNA sequenced; cause for celebration — or alarm?
Suspended in the blood of a pregnant woman — along with some added information from a dad-to-be's saliva — lurks enough fetal DNA to map out an unborn baby's entire genetic blueprint. It may sound like something conjured by Jules Verne, but it happened at the University of Washington: a professor and his graduate student used DNA samples from the parents of a baby boy who was still in utero and reconstructed his entire genetic makeup from A to Z. The account, published in Science Translational Medicine, takes prenatal testing to new heights, promising a motherlode of genetic information about a child who had not even been born — along with a corresponding trove of data that even experts don't yet know how to interpret.
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