Genomics Terms

Contributed by GFANZ members are here along with links to more comprehensive dictionaries.

Contributed Terms and Definitions

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You get one copy of your DNA from your mum, and one copy from your dad, so for each gene you have two copies. We use the term ‘allele’ to refer to one of these copies at a given position on your genome.

Lots of genomics projects make use of international, open repositories for their data. How does that gel with Te Tiriti principles and the Wai262 claims?

A specific kind of genetic editing where  “genetic scissors” are used for finding and replacing stretches of DNA in the genome.

The DNA in each of us comes from our ancestors. This type of genetic testing looks at those connections. Some individuals and cultures may not want this information shared (which is part of the process). What are you giving away from you and your whānau when you sign up for a DNA test?

This is the process where DNA from one organism is put into another organism (maybe the same species, maybe not). Although the idea of frankenfish gets a lot of airplay, what about things like golden rice? What does it mean to mix genetic materials from a Māori perspective?

Maybe it sounds scary, like it might lead a friendly pet turtle to become a crime-fighting ninja. But, everyone carries a few mutations unique to them. Most of the time they don’t do much because they are masked by ‘good’ copies of alleles, but mutation is also the ultimate source of all the variation among life on earth. 

A family tree of how species are related to each other.

Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms. The technical term for places in the genome where at least one individual has an allele that is different.