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Discussion: Epigenetics and Genetic Screening

Epigenetic influences mean that genetic expression can only be fully understood in the context of environment. Likewise, environmental influences may be quite different depending on the particular genes that are present. The intertwined effects of experience and gene expression have implications far beyond the theoretical questions of how cells in the developing brain interact with one another. As society approaches the era when anyone might be able to have their entire genome decoded for a modest price, and scientists learn more about which genetic variants can increase or decrease the risk of mental health disorders, there is a greater need for understanding how genes can impact the human mind. Many factors influence gene expression, but epigenetics provides a potential link between the environment and changes to gene expression.

In this Discussion, you will describe how information stored in a gene influences behavior and how environment and experience can impact the rate of gene expression. You will also consider the ethical implications of screening for genetic medical or psychological disorders.

Note: For this Discussion, you are required to complete your initial post before you will be able to view and respond to your colleagues’ postings. Begin by clicking on the Post to Discussion Question link, and then select Create Thread to complete your initial post. Remember, once you click on Submit, you cannot delete or edit your own posts—and cannot post anonymously. Please check your post carefully before clicking on Submit.

To prepare:

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources and pay particular attention to what genes are, how they affect behavior, and how epigenetics affects gene expression.
  • As you are reading, think about the ethical considerations of using genetic screening for disorders.

By Day 3

Post a response to the following:

  • Define what a gene is.
  • Describe how information stored in a gene can become a protein that influences behavior (transcription and translation).
  • Summarize what is meant by epigenetics and describe how these modifications to the DNA can increase or decrease the rate of gene expression.
  • Identify and describe two ethical considerations when using genetic screening for medical and psychological disorders.

Support your posting with specific references from literature in the Walden Library and Learning Resources. Zero plagiarizing, Quote wprk. No.coms

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