Joyful_soul
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  • In simple terms, what are they?

    Can they be modified to improve the way I look? (I know this sounds silly)
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Hype en Ecosse
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(Original post by Joyful_soul)
  • In simple terms, what are they?

    Can they be modified to improve the way I look? (I know this sounds silly)
Epigenetics deals with the non-DNA parts of your genetic make-up. So your genes are made up of the actual DNA sequences, and then it's wrapped up in a bunch of proteins and has extra molecules stuck onto it, which effects the expression of the gene.

No, they can't be modified to affect your looks, unfortunately!

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Asklepios
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(Original post by Joyful_soul)
  • In simple terms, what are they?

    Can they be modified to improve the way I look? (I know this sounds silly)
All cells have an inbuilt "blueprint" that basically tells them what to do and what proteins to make. The genetic code is what the blueprint actually says, and the epigenome is what font each bit of the blue print is in - certain genes that are written in a "bigger font" will be read whereas the small print is there but doesn't get read for that cell. Obviously cells don't operate in font size but in chemical modification to the DNA (without changing the base sequence). Through such mechanism, cells can switch genes on and off.

Theoretically if we can easily alter your epigenome then we can upregulate and downregulate certain genes to improve the way you look (at least slightly). But there's a couple of reasons this isn't going to happen anytime soon - firstly we don't know that much about which genes we need to switch on and off and secondly we don't have a method of selectively targeting specific genes for epigenetic modification.


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Joyful_soul
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(Original post by Asklepios)
All cells have an inbuilt "blueprint" that basically tells them what to do and what proteins to make. The genetic code is what the blueprint actually says, and the epigenome is what font each bit of the blue print is in - certain genes that are written in a "bigger font" will be read whereas the small print is there but doesn't get read for that cell. Obviously cells don't operate in font size but in chemical modification to the DNA (without changing the base sequence). Through such mechanism, cells can switch genes on and off.

Theoretically if we can easily alter your epigenome then we can upregulate and downregulate certain genes to improve the way you look (at least slightly). But there's a couple of reasons this isn't going to happen anytime soon - firstly we don't know that much about which genes we need to switch on and off and secondly we don't have a method of selectively targeting specific genes for epigenetic modification.


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(Original post by Hype en Ecosse)
Epigenetics deals with the non-DNA parts of your genetic make-up. So your genes are made up of the actual DNA sequences, and then it's wrapped up in a bunch of proteins and has extra molecules stuck onto it, which effects the expression of the gene.

No, they can't be modified to affect your looks, unfortunately!

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Love you guys, these are good answers!
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