Genetic Mapping, an Overview
Genetic analysis is likely to play an increasing role in the elucidation of the genomic architecture and their evolution, but also of the functions encoded in the genes themselves. It is but a matter of time before the entire sequence of each one of the 24 human chromosomes (22 autosomes and a pair of sex chromosomes) will be completely determined, i.e., the exact linear ordering of over 3 billion nucleotides constituting the human genome will be known. One may, therefore, wonder whether the interest in genetic studies will survive this fantastic challenge, the deciphering of the genome. It is our contention that this interest is genuine and will legitimately preoccupy scientists for years to come. The main reasons for this are that the message(s) of the DNA sequence information itself remains obscure, that we still lack the capacity to understand its many superimposed meanings. Adequate genetic questions will enable us to progress towards this endeavour. But there is also a second simpler reason for continuing with genetic studies. Indeed, not all genetic disorders have been characterised so far. And of those identified, almost all of the pathologies of complex etiology, such as multi-factorial diseases, still await elucidation. Furthermore, our interest in biology goes beyond genetic disorders, and there will be a time where other traits will be in the limelight. For all these, genetics seems to be an inevitable path.
KeywordsDuchenne Muscular Dystrophy Spinocerebellar Ataxia Candidate Gene Approach Limb Girdle Muscular Dystrophy Informative Family
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