DNA mandalas

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Chromosome mandala: what looks like a sun is in fact a new way to illustrate sta

Chromosome mandala: what looks like a sun is in fact a new way to illustrate statistical results. To create this illustration, the linear genetic sequence was circularised. A supermarker indicates the potential for the integration of retroviral DNA. The actual integration sites are marked with coloured dots.

Mandalas are symbolic illustrations in Hinduism and Buddhism that have been created for religious purposes for many thousands of years. The circular patterns – "mandala" is a Sanskrit word meaning circle – are mainly known from colouring books in our part of the world.

Now they have found their place in molecular biology: To illustrate the results of their statistical DNA analyses, a team led by Jeremy Luban at the University of Geneva created chromosome mandalas. They show which sites are targeted by retroviruses when integrating their DNA into the DNA of humans to become part of our genome.

 

CW