What is genomics?
When we think of genetics, many of us will think of the famous image of a double helix. This double helix contains all of our genetic information, called DNA, which can be thought of as a sort of blueprint, carrying all of the information our cells need to grow, develop and survive.
We can see genetics in action when we look at inherited similarities between generations - like hair colour, or height. Many conditions, such as haemophilia and some cancers, are also passed down from parent to child through genetics. Looking at the specific genes involved can help us to understand how these conditions are passed on. But looking at single genes doesn’t tell us how they interact with each other. Which is where genomics comes in.
‘Genomic sequencing’ is when we look at all of the DNA that someone has - called their genome. Our genes make up about 1-5% of our genome, and we now know that the rest of the genome does other important jobs like regulating our genes. By looking at the entire genome, we’re able to gather more information about every single gene, as well as how they interact together.
Stopping sarcoma together
Genomics is changing the way we think about and treat sarcoma. But we urgently need to continue funding research to drive the development of new treatments. Since 2009, your donations have helped us put more than £2.6 million into research that is transforming lives. Please help us to carry on this vital work by donating to Sarcoma UK today.