University of Valencia logo Logo Central Unit for Research in Medicine (UCIM) Logo del portal

The UCIM’s Genomics and Epigenetics section is aimed at offering researchers a technological service of the highest level.

Genomics is a scientific discipline and its goal is to study genomes in a global scale. This field seeks to understand the genome’s organisation, as well as its function, gene expression and regulation. It’s currently an essential tool for biological and biomedical research.

Moreover, in the last years, the analysis for simple DNA mutations (SNPs) became very important for the diagnosis of diseases and hereditary disorders. The predisposition to certain pathologies is strongly influenced by the individual’s genetic profile. That’s why large-scale studies on SNPs patterns in the study of cancer, the viability of organ transplant, Alzheimer’s disease, etc. were recently carried out.

On the other hand, the DNA’s methylation degree is a crucial part of the recently renowned epigenetics. Epigenetics refers to the reversible DNA changes responsible for gene expression or not, depending on the external conditions. The epigenetic information layer within the DNA is vital for development, growth, ageing and cancer. It does not alter the DNA’s sequence, although it influences its expression and can affect health. Some theories suggest that “epimutations” are the ones giving origin to diseases such as schizophrenia, while epigenetic variations explain, for instance, the discordances between identical twins, who show identical DNA sequences.