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The role of DNA research in society [podcast]

Since its discovery in 1953, DNA has revolutionized our world in many ways. From medical research to paternity tests to solving crimes, thanks to DNA, we now have a better understanding of who we are, how we have developed, and how we can heal.  

For today’s episode of The Oxford Comment, we’re commemorating National DNA Day in the United States by considering the role that DNA plays in our society. First, we welcome Amber Hartman Scholz, co-author of the article “Myth-busting the provider-user relationship for digital sequence information”, looking at how genetic resources are actually used and shared across the globe. We discuss the surprising findings of this research as well as the important implications for policy makers. We then interview Dee Denver, the author of The Dharma in DNA: Insights at the Intersection of Biology and Buddhism, to talk about the significance of DNA research and what the lay person should know about the uses and findings of DNA. We also talk about another aspect that is much less well known: the role that DNA plays at the intersection of spirituality and science. Underlying both interviews is the question of open science and why it matters, specifically, for DNA research.

Check out Episode 71 of The Oxford Comment and subscribe to The Oxford Comment podcast through your favourite podcast app to listen to the latest insights from our expert authors.

Recommended reading

Amber Hartman Scholz’s aforementioned GigaScience article can be found here. For further context on the provider-user relationship for digital sequence information, please see the companion article “Quantitative monitoring of nucleotide sequence data from genetic resources in context of their citation in the scientific literature“.

To learn more about Dee Denver’s work, please enjoy Chapter 1: Water from The Dharma in DNA. He is also the author of numerous journal articles, such as “Sex and Mitonuclear Adaptation in Experimental Caenorhabditis elegans Populations” in Genetics and “Adaptive Evolution under Extreme Genetic Drift in Oxidatively Stressed Caenorhabditis elegans” and “Comparative genomics of a plant-parasitic nematode endosymbiont suggest a role in nutritional symbiosis” in Genome Biology and Evolution.

Featured image: @rabbit_in_blue, CC0 via Unsplash.

Recent Comments

  1. Hum3D

    Thank you for this episode! I couldn’t imagine that the study of DNA had gone this far.

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