Dutch first to unravel a woman’s DNA

A red-haired, 34-year-old Dutch woman has become the first woman in the world to have her compete DNA sequenced, scientists at Leiden University Medical Centre announced on Monday.

The entire genome of Marjolein Kriek, a clinical genetic scientist at the university, will be made public in the near future, minus a few sensitive details, professor Gert-Jan van Ommen told a press conference.
Male sequencing data has already been unraveled for four men, including Jim Watson, co-discoverer of the double helix structure of DNA. ‘It was time to balance the genders a bit,’ news agency AP reported Van Ommen as saying.
Kriek said she considered it an enormous honour to have her DNA unraveled and hoped it would help break through taboos surrounding DNA research. ‘It is not as if I know when I am going to die, just as I don’t know if I will win the lottery,’ she told reporters.
Kriek does now know that some 10,000 years ago her ancestors came from Ireland, Poland or eastern Turkey. The research also shows that Kriek’s DNA deviates from the norm on 18 points. ‘If the research shows that I have a greater risk of cancer, that is something I will keep private,’ she said.
But, she said, having more information about any health risks associated with her genetic make-up means she can take action to minimise them.

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