DNA is the molecule that contains all the genetic information that makes up who we are. While the DNA code is very similar among all humans, it is still unique to each person, which gives us individuality and diversity within our species. Every cell in a person’s body contains their unique DNA sequence or genome.DNA stands for deoxyribonucleic acid and is a chain of four molecular building blocks called bases or nucleotides. These are adenine, cytosine, guanine, and thymine. When DNA is sequenced, the order of nucleotides arranged in the chain is determined. The specific order of these nucleotides is what scientists look at in a laboratory to determine the sequence of each gene, which is located on different regions on the DNA strand. In 1977 Fredrick Sanger invented a technique that allowed him to determine the order of nucleotides in a DNA chain. His method, known as Sanger Sequencing, paved the way for new technologies that have improved the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of sequencing DNA, enabling scientists to sequence the genomes of entire organisms. Years later, these technologies were leveraged internationally to sequence the whole human genome.
The Central Principles of Molecular Biology video series is meant to help explain molecular profiling and cancer, so that you can understand how Caris molecular profiling helps fight cancer through precision oncology.