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Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Taking a Step Forward

Over 30,000 genes come together to facilitate the creation of a human genome. Each of these genes contains information that’s outright crucial to life. The aspect of genetic function in human beings has long triggered complex yet fascinating discussions between the experts. Human genes are expressed in varying number of ways within one body, and the way through which they are expressed pretty much defines the uniqueness of one specific section of our body or the body’s uniqueness as whole. In addition, human genetic expression becomes extremely important during the assessment of your body’s health. The way these genes are behaving can send out a clear signal for any potential diseases in there and at what rate they are progressing.

Over the years, there have been numerous attempts by the researchers to enhance the methodologies that pertain to gaining knowledge about genetic underlying diseases. While the traditional imaging techniques have proved to be sustainable for over a long period of time, they do have a fair share of limitations. The chief limitation would be its incapability in allowing the study of more than a handful of genes at a given time. This has long restricted the horizons for the researchers to come up with effective treatments for gene-related diseases. However, it looks like we finally have a breakthrough against this conundrum. Jun Hee Lee from University of Michigan Medical School has come up with a new technique that might just become a turning point in this sphere. Basically, this new method uses high throughput sequencing instead of the traditional microscope to gather high-resolution imagery of gene expression from a tissue slide. Named Seq-Scope, this new technique allows the researcher to observe the expression of every gene along with single cells and structures within those cells as well. To give you a grasp of how intricate the imagery is in this technique, it reaches the detail of 0.6 micrometers, which loosely translates to being 66 times smaller than a human hair.

There are many novel elements that work in conjunction to help Seq-Scope reach its innovative potential. While talking about this new technique weaved by him and his team, Dr. Jun went on to say:

“Seq-Scope technology, combined with other single cell RNA sequencing techniques, could accelerate scientific discoveries and might lead to a new paradigm in molecular diagnosis.”

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