DNA Testing – The DNA Industry
There was a time when DNA was new, and DNA testing becoming open to all and sundry was unheard of. Today, anyone can apply for DNA testing, and the science is being used in an incredible number of applications and research programmes. This has led to the establishment and continued growth of a DNA industry.
Worldwide Demand For DNA Testing
DNA testing and research is being used across a number of sectors and from companies that specialise in paternity testing, to those that look at genetic modification of plants, there is a significant market to be tapped. Independent companies, new branches of established pharmaceutical companies and numerous research departments are either looking at ways that DNA can change our lives, or offering us DNA testing services. Here are some examples of how the industry is growing:
- DNA Sunscreen – Leading dermatologists at Newcastle University are concerned that currently available sunscreens aren’t protecting the skin from DNA damage. The DNA on your skin can be damaged long before you burn, and this damage can contribute to the development of skin cancer. A new company has been set up, and has won financial backing, to work with market leaders in this area to provide a DNA rating for sunscreen.
- Personalised Healthcare – Thorough analysis of our DNA can show whether we have a predisposition towards certain diseases or are likely to react badly to particular medicines. In the long-term, this information could be used to tailor the healthcare we get which, experts argue, could prevent a huge amount of wastage in the current health service.
- Soft drinks may damage DNA – In May 2007, researchers at a British University released details of a study into the effects of some soft drinks on DNA. They found that one of the ingredients often present in fizzy drinks, E211 or sodium benzoate may damage DNA, causing problems similar to those caused by alcohol abuse. Damaging the important mitrochondrial DNA, this chemical could cause cell damage.
Given the possible effects of both natural and man-made environments and substances, it’s important that research into DNA continues, and that the companies offering DNA testing uphold the reputation of this fledgling industry by providing the best possible results and service to their clients.