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February 2006
The NIH news in Health  

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, Ph.D., Writer/Editor
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Carla Garnett, Margaret Georgiann (illustrations), John Peterson and Harrison Wein, Ph.D.

The Future of Genetic Testing

The Future of Genetic Testing
Telling Science Fact from Science Fiction
Are you likely to get heart disease? Is obesity in your future? Your risk of developing many diseases and health conditions is partly written in your genes. One day soon you’ll be able to visit the doctor, have some blood drawn and find out more about your health risks for the next 5 or 10 years through a method called genetic testing. But we still have many things to learn about genes before that vision becomes a reality.

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Genes or Environment?
Epigenetics Sheds Light on Debate
Which is more important in shaping who we are and what we will become—our genes or the environment around us? For centuries, people have debated whether nature or nurture decides how we look and act. Now, a field of research called epigenetics is showing that we can’t really separate one from the other.

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