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Genomics & Health Impact Update

Volume 31   Number 11   September 12 -19 , 2013About the Update


Features of the Week

Genetic Epidemiology: What a Difference 20 Years Can Make!

Manhattan plot

New CDC blog post: Genetic epidemiology-what a difference 20 years can make!

Human genome epidemiology: Building the evidence base for using genomic information to improve health and prevent disease

The Human Genome Epidemiology Navigator (HuGE Navigator): An online continuously update curated database of epidemiologic studies of human genetic variation in relation to human diseases

GWAS Integrator: Provides robust lookup and analytic functionalities for all published GWAS studies that are available in several databases



50 Years of Newborn Screening: From Saving Lives to Population Health Research

newborn baby

CDC information on newborn screening
Each year, millions of babies in the U.S. are routinely screened, using a few drops of blood from the newborn's heel, for certain genetic, endocrine, and metabolic disorders

CDC podcast: Newborn screening program - role of laboratories

Newborn Screening Translational Research Network (NBSTRN): Connecting researchers to resources

Association for Public Health Laboratories: Newborn screening blog post stories

Save babies through screening foundation: Working to prevent disabilities and death resulting from disorders detectable through newborn screening tests

From newborn screening to population health research: implementation of the Michigan BioTrust for health 
Langbo C, et al. Public Health Rep 2013 Sep;128(5):377-84

NIH program explores the use of genomic sequencing in newborn healthcare, NIH, Sep 4

US funds pilots of genomic sequencing in newborn screening, PHG Foundation, Sep 4

Growing up genomic: What happens when you know all a baby’s genes?  By Carey Goldberg, Common Health, Sep 4

Sequenced from the start
Nature 2013 Sep 11


Suicide, Family History & Prevention

depressed girl

CDC information: Each year, more than 36,000 Americans take their own lives and about 465,000 people receive medical care for self-inflicted injuries. Several factors can put a person at risk for suicide including family history of suicide.

Suicide has many warning signs. For more information, visit American Association of Suicidology

Genetics of suicidal behavior in children and adolescents.
Gil Zalsman, NCBI bookshelf, 2012

The US Preventive Services Task Force recommends screening for major depressive disorder in adolescents (ages 12 to 18 years) when systems are in place to ensure accurate diagnosis, psychotherapy and followup (B recommendation).  Consider parental history of depression when screening adolescents (2009)

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends screening adults for depression when depression care supports are in place to assure accurate diagnosis, effective treatment, and follow-up (B recommendation). Consider family history of depression when screening adults for depression (2009)

Did you know? 342 genes have been reported in relation to suicide, including 9 genomewide association studies. To find out more, please visit the HuGE Navigator


Genomics in Clinical Practice: Recent CDC Podcasts

a graph

Integrating genomics into pediatric primary care: a public health perspective (Aug 26, 2013)

The public health perspective on translating genomics into health benefits: More important than ever (Jan 24, 2013)

A tiered approach to integrating genomic tests into your practice (Jan 14, 2013)

Cascade genetic screening and public health practice: An idea whose time has come. (Oct 18, 2012)

Family health history: Use it to inform preventive services for your patients (Sep 24, 2012)


September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

girl eating an apple

Presidential Proclamation --National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, Aug 30

CDC Vital Signs:  Progress on childhood obesity- many states show declines, Aug 2013

CDC Information: September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month and Fruits & Veggies—More Matters Month

Did you know that 167 genes have been reported with risk of childhood obesity, including 7 genomewide association studies. To find out more, visit the HuGE Navigator  

Study identifies four new genetic markers for severe childhood obesity, by Alexandra Sifferlin, Time Magazine, Apr 2013

CDC information: Behavior, environment, and genetic factors all have a role in obesity

NIH Genetic Testing Registry: Find out which genetic diseases are associated with obesity and what genetic tests are available


September in National Cholesterol Education Month: Familial Hypercholesterolemia

a heart

CDC information: September is National Cholesterol Education Month

High cholesterol in the family: A heart disease risk you may not know you have, by Jennifer J Brown, PhD, Everyday Health

International Familial Hypercholesterolemia Summit: From awareness to action, September 19, Annapolis, Maryland

What is familial hypercholesterolemia? It is a common genetic condition associated with premature heart disease and stroke, FH Foundation information

CDC podcast: Cascade screening in familial hypercholesterolemia

CDC information on preventable deaths from heart disease & stroke- Using electronic health records to identify and support patients, refer patients to community resources and track progress on cholesterol management

Familial hypercholesterolaemia is underdiagnosed and undertreated in the general population: guidance for clinicians to prevent coronary heart disease. Consensus Statement of the European Atherosclerosis Society Eur Heart J, Aug 15


Smoking Cessation, Genomics & Public Health

stop smoking sign

CDC Information: More than 100,000 Americans quit smoking due to national media campaign- Landmark tobacco education ad campaign more than doubled goals

CDC blog post on smoking and genomics: Where there is smoke there is fire… addiction, and yet desire to quit (2012)

Did you know? More than 5000 genes have been reported in relation to smoking health risks and addiction including 89 genomewide association studies. To find out more, visit the HuGE Navigator

NIH Research Matters:  Genetics May Guide Ways to Quit Smoking (2012)


September is Sickle Cell Disease Awareness Month

Sickle Cell

CDC information: Test your knowledge on sickle cell disease

CDC Registry and Surveillance System for sickle cell disease and other hemoglobinopathies (RuSH)

Healthy People 2020 objectives on blood disorders and blood safety include objectives for sickle cell disease



September Is Infant Mortality Awareness Month

baby toys

CDC information: Birth defects, prematurity and SIDS are top causes of infant mortality that  have genetic and environmental factors associated with them

CDC information: Genetics and infant health: What should you know about pediatric genetics?

Genetic perspective on infant mortality. [PDF 846.34 KB]
Tahnee N. Causey, MS et al. Southerm Medical Association

The pregnancy & health profile: A risk assessment & screening tool, NCHPEG, August 2013 

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Select Events

conference room

Clinical Genomics for Cancer Diagnostics
September 23-24 ~ Boston, MA

Fifth Annual Consumer Genomics Conference
September 25-27 ~ Boston, MA

NIH Gene Therapy Symposium
September 26-27 ~ Bethesda, MD


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Funding Opportunities

piggy bank on top of a few books

Patient-centered Outcomes Research Institute newly funded projects [PDF 192.35 KB] (Sep 10)

NIH grants expand search for role of microbes in health and disease in adults, infants, NIH News, Sep 9

New NIH awards focus on nanopore technology for DNA sequencing, NIH News, Sep 6

NIH grants to investigate disease-related variations in genetic makeup, NIH News, Sep 6

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Reports and Publications

Ethics, Policy and Law

stacked books with a gavel infront of them

Privacy and protection in the genomic era
Nature Med 19, 1073 (2013) Sep 6

Promoting the participant–researcher partnership.
Jennifer Q. Zhao and Susanne B. Haga, Genetics in Medicine, Sep 5

Human genome sequencing: the real ethical dilemmas. Mark Henderson, The Guardian, Sep 9

Cancer gene sequencing raises new medical ethics issues, Medscape, Sep 6 [by free subscription only]

Prenatal Testing

a pregnant woman

Noninvasive prenatal testing: limitations and unanswered questions
Monica A. Lutgendorf et al. Genetics in Medicine, Sep 5

Public Health Sciences

Reviews & Commentaries on Science & Technology

stacked papers

From dissecting cadavers to dissecting genomes
Topol E Sci Transl Med 5(202):202ed15 2013 Sep 11

Next-generation sequencing: The genome jigsaw
Marx V Nature 501, 263-268 2013 Sep 11

What is a biobank? Different definitions among stakeholders
Shaw DM et al. Clinical Genetics, Sep 3

The human urine metabolome.
Souhaila Bouatra, et al. PloS One, Sep 2013

Some experiences and opportunities for big data in translational research
Christopher G. Chute et al. Genetics in Medicine, Sep 5

Parents push for standardized screening of Jewish genetic diseases, CNN, Sep 10

Genome Digest: What researchers are learning as they sequence, map, and decode species’ genomes, by Erin Weeks, The Scientist, Sep 9

From birth, our microbes become as personal as a fingerprint,  by Rob Stein, NPR, Sep 9

Microbe transplants treat some diseases that drugs can't fix, by Rob stein, NPR, Sep 9

A defense of beanbag epidemiology. Nature/Nurture blog on genetic epidemiology and statistics–how tos and wherefores, Sep 6

Is testing a baby's genome worth it? MSN News, Sep 6

How a change in gut microbes can affect weight, by Rob Stein, NPR, Sep 5

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CDC-Authored Genomics Publications


CDC authors are indicated in bold

Bacterial strain typing.
Maccannell D. Clin Lab Med. 2013 Sep;33(3):629-50.

Occupational and genetic risk factors for osteoarthritis: A review.
Yucesoy B, Charles LE, Baker B, Burchfiel CM. Work. 2013 Sep 4

View previous CDC-authored publications

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About the Genomics & Health Impact Update

The Update includes  genomics and health impact news and publications, CDC announcements, reports, blogs, podcasts, and other products. The Update features genomic tests, family history, programs and practice, policy and legislation and public health science.  To receive the update electronically every week sign-up here.


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The CDC Office of Public Health Genomics makes available the above information as a public service only. The items in the update come from news articles and scientific articles and abstracts published during the past week. The headlines and lead sentences are exactly as they appear & do not necessarily reflect the opinions, recommendations, or endorsement by the CDC.  Note that some links may become invalid over time.


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