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In 2017, no Canadian would accept discrimination based on such genetically determined factors as sex or skin colour. As a matter of principle and common sense, MPs from all parties should unite to pass Bill S-201, which will make it illegal to discriminate on the basis of one's genes.
Let's start with some basic numbers. Excellent data from Canada indicates that eight per cent of people over the age of 65 will be diagnosed with dementia, and about two-thirds of those will have Alzheimer's disease. The risk of developing Alzheimer's disease doubles for every five years of life beyond age 65, making older age one of the most significant and predictable risk factors.
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Genetics are often to blame for hair loss, and rightfully so, at least in many cases. But while genetics are the most common cause of hair loss in both men and women, for some, hair loss can be caused by a variety of other reasons.
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We are a long way off from identifying definitive biomarkers and personalized gene therapies are likely generations away. The hype is big, but our hope is misplaced. The science isn't there yet, and the sooner we stop putting our faith in near-miraculous breakthroughs, the sooner we can realistically survey the options at hand.
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We can thank, or blame, our mothers for a lot of things. But is hair loss one of them? We've all heard it before; hair loss is passed down from your mother's side, but how much truth is there to this saying?
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The human body evolved over millions of years, long before cars, escalators, laptops and remote controls. It's built to expend effort. Gas-powered vehicles enabled us to move over long distances or get somewhere quickly, but they're bad medicine when they're used to go two or three blocks. Our lives are easier but not necessarily healthier. It's time we put more thought into keeping our bodies active and well, minimizing sickness.
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April is Parkinson's disease awareness month, a time to learn about this illness and to be aware of the estimated seven to ten million people that wake up everyday to face the challenges of this incurable, progressive illness. And these challenges include motor symptoms like tremor, rigidity, slowness of movement and loss of balance.
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As a genetics counsellor, one of the most frequently asked questions I hear is, "Can I have a genetic test to see if I am predisposed to cancer?" The short answer: maybe.
When my daughter was two-and-a-half years old I approached Dr. Carl Laskin, a specialist in reproductive immunology and autoimmune diseases in pregnancy, with a hypothetical proposition: "If I asked, would you help me have a second child with a known genetic condition?"
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If you're trying to quit smoking, new research from the University of Toronto suggests the first thing you need to understand is your DNA.
Protecting members of our society from discrimination based on the colour of their skin, ethnicity, or ancestry is a fundamental Canadian value. Unfortunately, Canadians across the country currently face real as well as potential future discrimination based on their DNA. Genetic testing can provide diagnostic precision and more effective treatment of illness, saving lives and ultimately reducing healthcare costs. Tragically, patients all too often face a dreadful dilemma: undergo testing that could prolong and improve the quality of their lives but would make them vulnerable to discrimination, or refrain from testing and take their chances.
Male pattern hair loss comes in several forms: thinning hair, a receding hairline, hair loss at the crown of the head, and loss in an "M" shape. Besides genetics, there are many factors that affect hair loss: diet, health, hair care routine, and hair tools.
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While experts have long debated whether nature or nurture is ultimately the decisive factor in how well we age, whether some of us are born to last longer or whether diet and lifestyle play a role, it is clear for Dr. Kim that genetic make-up outdoes anything we can add in terms of healthy living.
The question whether obesity is solely caused by diet and lifestyle choices or whether a person's genetic make-up plays a role as well has long been debated among scientists without producing conclusive answers. One recently completed study tried to shed more light on this issue by following entire families over several generations.