Friday, October 2, 2009

Genomics to Confirm Nationality?

Thanks to Kylee for pointing out this frightening trend from the U.K. Border Agency.

http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/326/5949/30

Essentially, the United Kingdom is experimenting with using mitochondrial and Y-chromosome markers to determine if asylum-seekers that flee persecution are actually from the nation in question.

Advocates of this policy don't seem to understand that genetic variation is not nation-specific. Just as you cannot "look" at a person and determine their nationality, you cannot look at their DNA to make that determination either.

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Getting Genetics Done by Stephen Turner is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.