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Naked Genetics, from the Naked Scientists Podcast

Naked Genetics, from the Naked Scientists Podcast

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Naked Genetics takes a look at the science of genes. With in-depth interviews, the latest news from the world of genetics, answers to your questions, and our gene of the month, tune in for a look inside your genes...


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 Podcast Website:
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/articles/biology-articles/genetics/

Battle of the sexes - Naked Genetics 17.04.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Apr 13, 2017


We might joke about the battle of the sexes, but it turns out that this is actually true - at least for a hundred or so imprinted genes. Plus, what opossums can teach us about sex, reporting back from a very special scientific meeting, and a superhero-styled gene of the month.

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Putting genomics to work - Naked Genetics 17.03.15

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Mar 15, 2017


The DNA sequencing revolution is providing ever more data about genomes from all kinds of species, from humans to bacteria. But how do we make sense of it all? Who gets their hands on it? And how do we use it to benefit patients? We meet the scientists developing new computer tools to analyse and democratise global genomics. Plus, how your partner's genes affect you - assuming you're a mouse - and a shrunken gene of the month.

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Science and the single cell - Naked Genetics 17.02.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, Feb 14, 2017


Our bodies are made up of trillions of cells - but these aren't mere biological building blocks, as inert as bricks. They're constantly communicating and changing. So how do scientists measure this? Plus, you can now take part in an international survey about genetics knowledge, a GIANT study throws up new genes linked to height, and a romantic gene of the month.

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Genes, laws and Brexit - Naked Genetics 17.01.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Jan 14, 2017


We hear a lot about genetic modification and how it's being used to improve agriculture. But who decides whether modified crops can be grown? Do new gene editing techniques like CRISPR count as GM? And what happens to these regulations when the UK leaves the EU? Plus, our gene of the month comes with a tale behind it.

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All human life is here - Naked Genetics 16.12.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Dec 14, 2016


The story of human evolution is long and complicated, but the simple truth is - you're only here because your ancestors got lucky. Plus, we wind the clock back to the very start of human life, and discover how new research is pushing back the frontiers of human embryology. Plus a suitably festive gene of the month. This is the Naked Genetics podcast for December 2016 with me, Dr Kat Arney, brought to you in association with The Genetics Society, online at genetics.org.uk.

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Searching for switches - Naked Genetics 16.11.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Nov 14, 2016


This month we're delving into the junk in the genome - or, to put it more correctly - our non-coding DNA. Less than 2 per cent of the human genome contains protein-coding genes, so what does all the rest do?

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Testing, testing - Naked Genetics 16.10.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Oct 13, 2016


We hear more than ever about the secrets hidden in our genes, from our risk of diseases to traits such as intelligence or even sporting ability. But can we really test for them? And just because we can, does that mean we should? Plus, an extremely popular - and extremely distracting - gene of the month. This is the Naked Genetics podcast for October 2016 with me, Dr Kat Arney, brought to you in association with The Genetics Society, online at genetics.org.uk.

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Hello Dolly - Naked Genetics 16.09.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, Sep 13, 2016


This month we've got a special bonus-length podcast commemorating twenty years since the birth of Dolly the Sheep, the first mammal cloned from an adult cell. Her birth changed the scientific world, and led to the development of other transformative technologies. Plus, our gene of the month is keeping a straight face.

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40 years of selfishness - Naked Genetics 16.08.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Aug 13, 2016


40 years ago Richard Dawkins' The Selfish Gene hit the shelves. We look back on how it changed the way many people think about genetics. Plus, linking nurture to nature, and a gigantic gene of the month.

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Signal to noise - Naked Genetics 16.07.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Jul 13, 2016


Building a baby is a complicated business, with millions of cells needing to work together. So how does it happen? Plus, how big data is making big strides in big genes, and our gene of the month is going round and round in circles.

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Genes for all - Naked Genetics 16.06.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Jun 13, 2016


Genes, genomes and genetic technology are playing increasingly important parts in our lives, industries, food and healthcare, and at a point in the not-too-distant future we're probably going to have to grapple with at least some of the contents of our DNA. But is the public really prepared to look inside its genes? Plus, the company aiming to bring molecular biology labs for all, and our gene of the month is crunchy on the outside. This is the Naked Genetics podcast for June 2016 with me, Dr Kat Arney, brought to you in association with The Genetics Society, online at genetics.org.uk.

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Check your compatibility - Naked Genetics 16.05.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, May 13, 2016


You may not realise it, but your health, immune system and even love-life are governed by the particular set of so-called compatibility genes that you inherit. There are thousands of different variations in these genes, but why do we have such diversity and does it matter? Plus, we dig into the latest research on cancer genetics - how studying hundreds of tumour genomes might bring forward new breast cancer cures.

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What's in your genes? - Naked Genetics 16.04.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Apr 13, 2016


As the costs of DNA analysis come down, we've seen the rise of direct-to-consumer genetic testing, allowing anyone to spit in a tube, pop it in the post and get a personalised readout direct to their inbox. But what do these tests actually reveal? Plus, how advertising execs can help us talk about genes, digging up the secrets in dogs genomes, and our gene of the month is totally legless.

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Designer genes - Naked Genetics 16.03.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Mar 14, 2016


The recent invention of powerful precision tools for editing the human genome - known as CRISPR, has opened up new worlds of possibilities for researchers seeking to understand how our genes work - and also those who want to permanently change the human genome for generations to come. But are we on the road to designer babies? Plus, we unpack the latest cancer breakthrough, and our gene of the month is making a terrible racket.

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Crazy for CRISPR - Naked Genetics 16.02.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, Feb 14, 2016


It's the hottest new biotechnology technique to hit the headlines since well, since ever. CRISPR is a precision set of genome editing tools enabling scientists to cut and paste together DNA in any organism, exactly how they want - and the implications for human health, and even humanity, are huge. Plus, linking genetics to lifestyle, and our gene of the month is black and white and very cute.

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Naked Genetics 47 - Naked Genetics 16.01.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Jan 14, 2016


This month we bring you a bumper edition, packed full of all our favourite bits from the past four years.

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Naked Genetics 46 - Naked Genetics 15.12.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Dec 14, 2015


Synthetic biology - engineering life - is set to revolutionise the world, but how? We'll be hearing about some of the most exciting applications for synthetic biology, and how it's being commercialised. Plus, our gene of the month has got itself all in a twist.

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Why don't elephants get cancer? - Naked Genetics 15.11.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Nov 14, 2015


Animals like elephants and whales are made up of many more cells than a human, or a mouse, and they live far longer. Yet they hardly ever get cancer - and the big question is why? Plus, revolutions in genetics, and a magical gene of the month.

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Engineering life - Naked Genetics 15.10.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, Oct 13, 2015


Imagine designing bacteria that can do whatever you want - from cleaning up oil spills to churning out the latest cancer treatments - ordering the biological parts online and building it in a couple of weeks. This is no longer the stuff of dreams, but the reality of synthetic biology. Plus, tracing European genes, how parasites manipulate our immune systems, I take part in a research project to find out if sociability is in my genes, and our gene of the month is looking for wedded bliss.

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Hundreds and Thousands - Naked Genetics 15.09.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, Sep 13, 2015


When it comes to figuring out which genes and genetic variations are linked to particular traits and diseases, there's only one way to do it, and that's to go large, with cohort studies involving hundreds or even thousands of volunteers. We meet the Born In Bradford bunch, a Canadian cohort, and more than a few pairs of twins. Plus, oh my God, they killed our gene of the month!

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Mysterious methylation - Naked Genetics 15.08.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Aug 13, 2015


There's more to life than the four letters of DNA, and our cells use a chemical tag known as DNA methylation to mark out certain parts of the genome, helping cells to remember what they're doing. And, as you might expect, it's pretty important. Plus, how your GCSE success could be encoded in your genes, an important molecular cause of autism identified, and an illuminating gene of the month.

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The wonderful world of epigenetics - Naked Genetics 15.07.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, Jul 14, 2015


Genes are the instructions that tell our cells what to do, but how do different types of cells know which genes to switch on or off at the right time? The solution lies in epigenetics - the molecular bells and whistles that act on top of our DNA to control gene activity. Plus, a new gene involved in severe obesity, and a mythical gene of the month.

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Breeding a better cow - Naked Genetics 15.06.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Jun 13, 2015


For centuries, breeders have been selecting plants and animals with desirable genetic traits. So how have some of these changes come about, and where will new genetic technologies take our food in the future?

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The story of maize - Naked Genetics 15.05.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, May 13, 2015


You may not realise it, but all the food you eat has been genetically altered over time by plant and animal breeders, capturing advantageous traits to grow more nutritious and easy-to-farm foods as efficiently and healthily as possible. Maize, or corn as it's often know, is a prime example of this change. Plus, is attractiveness to mosquitoes in your genes? And our gene of the month is small but significant.

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Patenting and preserving genes - Naked Genetics 15.04.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Apr 13, 2015


There are few things in life as important as the food we eat, but making sure that we guard the genes in our crops for the future is just as important. Plus, we take a look at some of the intellectual property issues surrounding our food, learn squid's surprising secret, and our gene of the month might be a mayor.

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A hundred thousand genomes - Naked Genetics 15.03.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Mar 14, 2015


Over the past year the Government has unveiled an audacious programme under the banner of Genomics England, aiming to sequence the genomes of 100,000 people affected by cancer and rare genetic diseases. We take a look at some of the practical and ethical issues around the project. Plus, our gene of the month comes from the land of the forever young.

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Genetically Modified plants - Naked Genetics 15.02.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Feb 14, 2015


Genetically modified, or GM, crops are a hot topic. Some people are deeply suspicious of the technology while others see it as an effective and efficient way of generating bountiful, healthier harvests. Plus, purple tomatoes, a giant of a gene involved in heart disease, and what's in a name? We take a look at the naming of genes.

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Clever mice and drunken flies - Naked Genetics 15.01.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Jan 14, 2015


How do we learn complex tasks like playing the piano? Why can we remember things better after a good night's sleep? And why do people - and fruit flies - drink again after the hangover from hell? The answers are all in your genes. Plus, why large-scale searches for so-called "genes for schizophrenia" and other psychiatric diseases are turning out to be trickier than we thought, and a gene of the month with a touch of Scottish - or maybe Hollywood - spirit.

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Searching for the engram - Naked Genetics 14.12.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, Dec 14, 2014


For many years scientists have been searching for the mysterious engram - the place in the brain where memories are kept. And thanks to advances in genetics and neurobiology, it looks like they're now getting close to finding it. Plus, contagious cancers in dogs and devils, and our gene of the month prefers the cold.

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Targeting cancer genes - Naked Genetics 14.11.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Nov 14, 2014


Every year in the UK more than 330,000 people are diagnosed with cancer. The good news is that more and more are surviving, and there's hope that the new generation of genetic research and targeted therapies will bring more cures in the future. But is cancer a cleverer enemy than we thought? Plus sealion genital cancers, and an over-excited gene of the month.

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Genes, ageing and metabolism - Naked Genetics 14.10.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Oct 13, 2014


Could we one day be popping pills that tweak our metabolism and make us live longer? It's not as far off as you might think. Plus, the cow genome goes large, bat flu flies into focus, and an untidy gene of the month.

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Long live our genes - Naked Genetics 14.09.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Sep 13, 2014


Every day we get older, and whether you're desperately resisting the march of time, or embracing the ageing process, most of us would agree we want to live as long, healthy lives as possible. We'll be finding out how genetics research can help. Plus, making fingers with Alan Turing, growing lizard tails, and a long-lived gene of the month.

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Genes for sore eyes - Naked Genetics 14.08.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Aug 13, 2014


From the beauty of a sunset or the ugliness of war to the smile on a loved one's face, our eyes bring us all kinds of information about the world around us. now researchers are working to develop new therapies for people who have lost this precious sense. Plus, smelling elephants, marmoset twins, and an all-seeing gene of the month.

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Issues for genetic testing - Naked Genetics 14.07.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, Jul 13, 2014


Whether we like it or not, we're heading further along the road of genetic testing, not just for single genes but for complex diseases and even ancestry. But can the results of gene tests change our behaviour? Plus colouring crows, electric eels, gluing chromosomes and a sketchy gene of the month.

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Gene therapy - Cystic fibrosis, blindness and more - Naked Genetics 14.06.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Jun 13, 2014


Twenty years ago, gene therapy was a great hope for the future of medicine - directly tinkering with faulty genes to cure diseases, but progress has been slow. Now, things seem to be changing. Plus, silencing crickets, evolving brain and brawn, and a flowery gene of the month.

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Nature, nurture and wiring the brain - Naked Genetics 14.05.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, May 13, 2014


The more we understand about the genetic variations that affect our brains, the more questions are raised - for example, are we a product of nature or nurture, and what should we test for? Plus, why Y loss is bad for men, the usefulness of junk DNA, and a crunchy gene of the month.

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Genes, depression and schizophrenia - Naked Genetics 14.04.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, Apr 13, 2014


Around one in four adults in the UK experiences mental health problems in any year, and mental illness is a major problem for sufferers, their loved ones, and society. It's becoming clear that genes are involved, but what do we actually know? Plus, artificial chromosomes, autism in the womb, and a toddling little gene of the month.

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DNA damage and repair - Naked Genetics 14.03.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Mar 14, 2014


Every second your DNA is under assault - not just from chemicals in our environment or food, but from the hurly-burly of life within our own cells. We'll be finding out how DNA gets damaged and repaired, and how researchers are exploiting this to find better treatments for cancer. Plus, liver from skin cells, DNA from ancient teeth, and a scary little gene of the month.

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Smells like gene spirit - Naked Genetics 14.02.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Feb 14, 2014


Smell is probably the oldest sense, hardwired right into our brains and closely linked to memory. Now researchers are trying to unravel the complex genetics that underpin it. Plus, contagious dog genital cancers, gene therapy for blindness, and a rather slimy gene of the month.

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Now hear this - Naked Genetics 14.01.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, Jan 14, 2014


Hearing loss is distressing, whether it occurs later in life or in childhood. Now researchers are starting to unpick the genetic causes behind some of these problems. Plus, mice on drugs, stress and death, and a wobbly gene of the month.

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Taking shape - Naked Genetics 13.12.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Dec 14, 2013


Across the natural world, cells organise themselves into a wonderful array of shapes and structures. But how do they do this? Plus, building bones, plant sex in space, and a rather plump gene of the month.

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Come together - Naked Genetics 13.11.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Nov 14, 2013


All living cells are made up of protein molecules - but how do they organise themselves into structures? Plus bee sex, tough mice, and a happily married gene of the month.

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Have a heart - Naked Genetics 13.10.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, Oct 13, 2013


The heart is a vital biological pump, beating around a billion times in a lifetime. But faulty genes can cause big problems. Plus, taming the tiger genome, solving citrus sickness, and our gene of the month is for all you hopeless romantics out there.

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Genes and genealogy - Naked Genetics 13.09.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Sep 13, 2013


Who do you think you are? And is the answer in your genes? This month we're delving into genes and genealogy. Plus, putting an end to genetic determinism, and an ancient Egyptian gene of the month.

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Genes, infections and immunity - Naked Genetics 13.08.14

Author: Kat Arney
Tue, Aug 13, 2013


Why can some people stay fit as a fiddle, while other seem to catch every bug that's going? As you might expect, the answer lies in our genes. Plus, a multitude of mutant mice, the state of gene therapy for epilepsy, and an unseeing gene of the month.

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Let's talk about sex - Naked Genetics 13.07.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Jul 13, 2013


Summer loving is in the air, so what better time to think about sex? But we're not going to get graphic - we're talking about the genetics of sex determination. Plus, why turkeys need a wingman, figuring out fingerprints, and a leggy gene of the month.

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The future of fingerprinting - Naked Genetics 13.06.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Jun 13, 2013


Our genes are our unique calling card, and DNA analysis has been used to solve crimes and resolve paternity disputes for decades. Now new genetic technology promises to revolutionise medicine. Plus, we meet the man who invented genetic fingerprinting, discuss Angelina Jolie's breasts, and savour a cheesy gene of the month.

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Genomics - Hope or hype? - Naked Genetics 13.05.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, May 13, 2013


Genetic technology is expanding at a pace that few can keep up with, with huge amounts of data being generated every week. But is this explosion of information delivering meaningful advances for patients? Plus, how one scientist tracked down the gene fault behind his own disease, what sequencing the HeLa genome means for genetic privacy, and a Pythonesque gene of the month.

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Doing the twist - packing DNA - Naked Genetics 13.04.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Apr 13, 2013


Almost every single cell of your body is packed with more than two metres of DNA, containing your genes. But not only does it have to be packed up to fit in there, it also has to be organised and read. Plus, how genetic variations are linked to cancer risk,analysing dinosaur DNA, and an adventurous gene of the month.

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Beautiful otherness - autism genetics - Naked Genetics 13.03.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Mar 14, 2013


It's thought that around one in a hundred children in the UK is somewhere on the autistic spectrum - a complex range of disorders that can be challenging to understand and live with. But recent advances in genetics are bringing hope for new therapies that might help. Plus, we look at the genes underlying Specific Language Impairment, find out why cancer has the X factor, and meet a hopeless-sounding gene of the month.

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The wonderful world of RNA - Naked Genetics 13.02.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Feb 14, 2013


You've probably heard of DNA, but what do you know about RNA? As well as being the molecule that shuttles information from our genes into our cells, it also plays a huge number of other roles in all cells, from bacteria and viruses to tiny worms, plants and humans. Plus we delve into quadruplex DNA, wonder about the wolf genome, speculate on skin colour and our gene of the month has a literary twist.

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Fitting into your genes - the genetics of obesity - Naked Genetics 13.01.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Jan 14, 2013


The gym is full, the pubs are empty - it can only be January, as a good proportion of the population resolves to shape up and lose weight. But are your efforts going to help you fit into your jeans (with a J), or are you just fighting against your genes (with a G)? Plus, we discuss how genes might jump between cows and snakes, and we've got gout, goats, giant pandas and a glass bottom boat.This is the Naked Genetics podcast for January 2013 with me, Dr Kat Arney, brought to you in association with The Genetics Society, online at genetics.org.uk.

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Cancer genetics - When good cells go bad - Naked Genetics 12.12.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Dec 14, 2012


Cancer is literally the enemy within us -it starts when our own cells get damaged and go rogue, multiplying out of control and spreading around body. But how can we use new genetic knowledge to beat it? Plus, decoding the wheat genome, finding out where birds came from, and our gene of the month is more art than science.

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The genetics of germs - Naked Genetics 12.11.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Nov 14, 2012


Our world - and our bodies - are teeming with bacteria. And although some of them are friendly, many of them are not. Plus, electrifying news about bacterial nanowires, cuddly koalas, and counting chromosomes, and our gene of the month is the mindblowing Mind Bomb.

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Stop bugging me! The genetics of bedbugs and other insects - Naked Genetics 12.10.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sat, Oct 13, 2012


They suck your blood, hitch-hike on your luggage, and are a growing threat to the hotel industry. Bedbugs are a growing problem in the modern jet-set world, and scientists are using genetic techniques to try and understand why. Feeling itchy yet? Plus, we look at the genetics of some other annoying insects, get to the bottom of the recent controversy about junk DNA, and our gene of the month is none other than Superman and his weedier alter-ego Clark Kent.

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Epigenetics and reprogramming - turning back the clock - Naked Genetics 12.09.14

Author: Kat Arney
Thu, Sep 13, 2012


We've all heard of the genetic code - the letters that spell out the instructions in our DNA. But that's not the whole story. Researchers are increasingly digging into the epigenetic code - the marks that tell cells which genes to use and which to ignore. Plus, we take a look behind the headlines about older fathers and autism, find out what chimps can tell us about our cancer risk, and our gene of the month might be mistaken for a heavy metal band.

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Genes and genomes - Naked Genetics 12.08.14

Author: Kat Arney
Mon, Aug 13, 2012


It's now over a decade since the human genome was first sequenced, costing over a billion pounds and taking 13 years. Today, we're close to the thousand dollar genome. But what's in a genome, and what can it tell us about our risk of disease? Plus we'll be arguing the age of polar bears, and finding out about fish with skin cancer. And our gene of the month is one for the Trekkies out there - it's Tribbles.

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Hacking biology - synthetic DNA and experimental evolution - Naked Genetics 12.07.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Jul 13, 2012


Every biology student is familiar with DNA - the ladder-like blueprint of life built on a backbone of the sugar deoxyribose. Scientists are now hacking this structure to make entirely new DNA-like molecules built on different sugar skeletons, opening an exciting new world of synthetic genetics. Plus, we find out what happens when music has sex, discover why the X chromosome is more than just a number, and our gene of the month is the unfortunate Ken and Barbie.

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Tackling neurodegenerative diseases - Naked Genetics 12.06.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Jun 13, 2012


Complex, mysterious and currently incurable - the challenge for researchers working on neurodegenerative diseases is huge. We'll be finding out how scientists are using genetic approaches to understand these distressing illnesses. Plus we find out why claims of a male contraceptive pill are somewhat premature, discover how a 16th century mummy has revealed the history of hepatitis B, and investigate whether your genes could predispose you to life in orbit. And our gene of the month is the hollow-sounding Tinman.

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The world of top (genetics) models - Naked Genetics 12.05.14

Author: Kat Arney
Sun, May 13, 2012


This month we're taking a look at the world of top models - not the kind that won't get out of bed for less than ten grand, but the model organisms used by researchers all over the world to answer some of the most challenging questions in biology. We'll also be hearing about the origins of polar bears, the extinction of Tasmanian tigers, fitter frogs with faster-changing genomes and promiscuous bees. And move over Beyonce, because our gene of the month is the curvaceous Callipyge - Greek for beautiful buttocks.

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Developmental genetics - from one cell to many - Naked Genetics 12.04.14

Author: Kat Arney
Fri, Apr 13, 2012


This month we're taking a trip into the world of developmental genetics, finding out how an animal grows from one cell into many millions as it develops from a fertilised egg, and discovering how it knows when it's grown enough. We also hear about the hunt for genes involved in autism, see what sticklebacks can tell us about evolution, ponder the purpose of keeping 9,000 placentas, and ask whether we can ever genetically engineer humans to drink seawater. And the monster raving loony gene of the month is the wacky-sounding Lunatic Fringe.

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Genes and evolution - from populations to tumours - Naked Genetics 12.03.14

Author: Kat Arney
Wed, Mar 14, 2012


From whole populations to individual cancers, we're taking a look at genes and evolution. We're also talking about dogs and their diseases, shining a light on Van Gogh's sunflowers, and wondering whether the USB-sized DNA sequence is hope or hype. Plus we've got our gene of the month - whether it's Sonic, Desert or Indian, we'll be carefully getting to grips with the prickly persona of the hedgehog gene.

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