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Finding the missing heritability of complex diseases.

Nature

Inheritance Patterns, genetics, Genetic Predisposition to Disease, Genetics, Medical, methods, trends, Genome-Wide Association Study, Humans, Pedigree, Genetic Diseases, Inborn

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      Abstract

      Genome-wide association studies have identified hundreds of genetic variants associated with complex human diseases and traits, and have provided valuable insights into their genetic architecture. Most variants identified so far confer relatively small increments in risk, and explain only a small proportion of familial clustering, leading many to question how the remaining, 'missing' heritability can be explained. Here we examine potential sources of missing heritability and propose research strategies, including and extending beyond current genome-wide association approaches, to illuminate the genetics of complex diseases and enhance its potential to enable effective disease prevention or treatment.

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      The impact of next-generation sequencing technology on genetics.

      If one accepts that the fundamental pursuit of genetics is to determine the genotypes that explain phenotypes, the meteoric increase of DNA sequence information applied toward that pursuit has nowhere to go but up. The recent introduction of instruments capable of producing millions of DNA sequence reads in a single run is rapidly changing the landscape of genetics, providing the ability to answer questions with heretofore unimaginable speed. These technologies will provide an inexpensive, genome-wide sequence readout as an endpoint to applications ranging from chromatin immunoprecipitation, mutation mapping and polymorphism discovery to noncoding RNA discovery. Here I survey next-generation sequencing technologies and consider how they can provide a more complete picture of how the genome shapes the organism.
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        Author and article information

        Journal
        10.1038/nature08494
        19812666
        2831613

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