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A powerful and emerging genetic tool, the SNP - Single Nucleotide Polymorphism - is expected to revolutionize the field of biomedicine as well as in population studies tracing human history. Biomedical researchers are hopeful of applying SNP information in disease detection as well as in preventative and curative medicine and drug development, as genetic research is today aimed at SNP detection and mapping…
Single Nucleotide Polymorphism or the SNP, as commonly referred to by genetic and biomedical researchers, is a common form of DNA or genetic variation -90% of all variations-that occur within an individual's DNA sequence. [Brookes, 1999, pp: 177] The genetic code is specified by the four-nucleotide "letters" A (adenine), C (cytosine), T (thymine) and G (guanine). SNP variation occurs when a single nucleotide, such as an A, replaces one of the other three-nucleotide letters-C, G, or T. The change or alteration of the DNA segment AAGGTTA to ATGGTTA - the second "A" in the first sequence is replaced with a "T" in the second sequence - is an example of SNP. [NCBI, 2003]
SNPs occur about once in every 1,000 bases along the human genome. [Brookes, 1999, pp: 178] The high rate of occurrence of SNPs and their relatively regular distribution, present them as potential genetic markers in studying human genetic variation [Zhao et al, 1998 in Roses, 2000] Though many SNPs have no major effect on cell function, scientists suggest that certain SNPs are indicative of the susceptibility of an individual to diseases as well as the sensitivity or responsiveness to drug. [HGIP, 2004]
Otherwise a challenging task, the recent technological advances have en ...
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