Sep 19th 2016

Whole Genome Sequencing: Decoding the Language of Life and Health (FutureLearn)

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Learn how whole genome sequencing works and what it could mean for the future of healthcare with this free online course. Whole genome sequencing is a relatively new technology that allows us to ‘read’ a person’s or organism’s entire genetic code. But how does it work and what does it mean for all of us? How do scientists begin to make sense of the vast amount of information that whole genome sequencing provides? And what does this new technology mean for the future of healthcare and personalised medicine?

Learn how genome sequencing works

This course will take you behind the scenes to explore this emerging technology and its promises to revolutionise healthcare around the world. You will be given a unique insight into modern genetics laboratories and state of the art sequencing facilities, led by clinical scientists who are using whole genome sequencing to shape decisions about patient care and appropriate treatments.

You will be introduced to the fundamental basics of DNA and genetic variation, before exploring the process of whole genome sequencing and the ways in which the resultant data can be analysed and used to benefit patients. Leading scientists and genomics experts will explore the potential and limitations of this new technology, and the ethical questions that arise when we can ‘read a person’s genome’.

Explore how whole genome sequencing affects healthcare

Throughout the course you will be introduced to a range of case studies and scenarios where whole genome sequencing is having a profound impact on healthcare and life decisions. You will be introduced to England’s pioneering 100,000 Genomes Project and its potential impact on how we understand and care for patients with rare diseases and cancer. You will also discover how genomics is being used in epidemiology and helping us tackle infectious diseases.