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Genome: Unlocking Life's Code

Do you have your mother's dimples? Or your father's hairline? What is it about us that makes us us? And how much of it actually sets us apart from not only other human beings but from every other living thing on Earth?

Genome: Unlocking Life's Code begins to unravel the mystery behind the complete set of instructions needed for every living thing on Earth to grow and function: the genome. The exhibition immerses you in a high-tech environment that captures the revolutionary nature of genomic science. Genomics is the study of the entire genome of an organism; the genome is the entire set of genetic instructions found in a cell. In Genome: Unlocking Life’s Code, you can explore what the genome is, its scale and structure and find out how genomics plays a role in modern life.

  • Discover the fascinating diversity of living things, how their genomes differ—and their surprising similarities.
  • Learn how genomics has added to archaeological and fossil evidence, increasing knowledge of human origins and helping to answer questions about recent ancestry.
  • Investigate how genomics may point to ways to stop deadly epidemics in their tracks.
  • See yourself in a new way: as an individual, as a member of a family, and as part of the diversity of life on Earth.

It took nearly a decade, three billion dollars, and thousands of scientists to sequence the human genome in 2003. And thanks to the pioneering work of the Human Genome Project, we are starting to know so much more about ourselves, and our world.

Your genome is a roadmap that can help you trace your ancestral past, and take charge of your future health. Discover how our newfound ability to identify thousands of genes that contribute to disease has helped open the way to more personalized healthcare. Weigh in on the legal and ethical issues surrounding cutting-edge genomic research and its implications on society.

Want to know more about the Genome exhibition? You can take a virtual tour of the exhibition, meet a family whose lives were forever changed by genome sequencing, take advantage of teacher resources and student resources and more at the companion website, unlockinglifescode.org

The exhibition, which is currently making its West Coast premiere at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, was developed through a partnership between the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) and the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI). It was made possible in part by financial support from Life Technologies and other sponsors.

Genome: Unlocking Life's Code is locally presented by Thermo Fisher Scientific.


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