Frequently asked questions


What is a gene?
What is DNA?
What is a genotype?
What is an allele?
What is a polymorphism?
What are SNPs?
What are proteins?
What is BMI?
How to take a DNA sample?

What is a gene?

A gene is a segment of DNA that gives instructions to produce proteins. Genes are located in a particular place on a chromosome (locus) and contain information about when and where to produce necessary proteins. They also determine the composition of the protein, underlying the differences in the structure and activity of proteins and hence governing entire functionality of the body.

What is DNA?

DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) is the hereditary material, i.e. the carrier of hereditary information. DNA double helix consists of nucleotides. There are four types of nucleotides with the following designation: adenine (A), thymine (T), cytosine (C), and guanine (G). Human genome consists of about three billion bases.

What is a genotype?

Genotype is the allelic constitution of an organism or cell, i.e. specific set of alleles inherited at a locus. For instance, two different individuals may have different sequenced DNA fragments – AAGCCTA and AAGCTTA, respectively.

What is an allele?

Allele is an alternative form of a gene; variant of a single gene.

What is a polymorphism?

Polymorphism is simultaneous occurrence of several alleles of a particular gene in the population.

What are SNPs (pronounced snips)?

SNPs are single nucleotide polymorphisms in DNA sequence. In general, SNPs do not harm the body or cause diseases, but they underlie differences in our susceptibility to disease. Additionally, these variations in the DNA sequence may indicate individual response to pathogens, chemicals, drugs, vaccines, and to various nutrients (e.g. the impact of increased consumption of carbohydrates on gaining weight), and they also suggest the level of physical activity required to maintain normal weight or to become a successful athlete.

What are proteins?

Proteins play a crucial role in a body due to their involvement in all biological processes. Proteins consist of amino acids. Proteins are the ‘building blocks’ of the body, they contribute to growth and development, take part in antibody production, maintain the functionality of immune system, and participate in transporting various compounds. Almost all enzymes and several hormones consist of proteins.

What is BMI?

BMI or body mass index is a measure indicating the ratio of mass to height. BMI is calculated by dividing body mass (kg) by the square of the height (m).

Underweight
Normal weight
Overweight
Obesity
Severe obesity

BMI 16 - 18.9
BMI 19 - 25
BMI 25.1 - 30
BMI 30.1 - 35
BMI 35.1 - 40

How to take a DNA sample?

In order to take a DNA sample, rub a sterile cotton swab against the inside of your cheek for 20-30 seconds. Then let the swab air-dry for up to two hours, place it back in the plastic container and send it back to us. View our video instruction guide about taking a sample.   

 

Latest blog posts

All blog posts
30. January

Food intolerance – causes, detection and interpretation

Hypersensitivity or intolerance against certain foods continues to be controversial topic. What is the mechanism behind it, whether and how to determine it, how to proceed after receiving test results?

30. January

The role of genetics in determining diurnal preferences

Have you felt more forgetful and less focused after a sleepless night? Have you noticed that some of your friends are active already early in the morning, while others would sleep till noon and prefer to work late at night? These are but a few examples of the effect sleep may have on us, our productivity and even our health.

25. May

The results of the genetic test of athletic abilities of leading Estonian junior swimmer Kregor Zirk

Sports Gene helped junior swimmer Kregor Zirk to determine his athletic predisposition and food intolerance. On 11 May, daily newspaper Postimees published an article that discusses in detail the expectations of Kregor and his coach Kaja Haljaste regarding the genetic test and practical use of the results in planning Kregor’s future career.

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