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Aug 31
DNA test may predict your child's talent
What if you knew your child has genes [basic, functional units of heredity, each occupying a specific place on a chromosome.] to be the next Einstein and you could very well bring out the best in him?

An increasing no. of parents in the United States and Europe are getting their kids undergo a DNA or gene test that might give them an insight into the child's future prospects.

While some claim that knowing the results could help parents make decisions about where their kids might excel; others wonder if such a test is really a good idea.

Early gene mapping for future

The DNA test offers parents a glimpse of their kids future. It is a technology that promises to revolutionize the way we groom our children.

It is possible to determine a child's genetic makeup or genetic map well before he or she first kicks a ball, learns to swim or even before takes his or her first step.

"A child can be tested directly right after they're born," Mike Weinstein of Atlas Sports Genetics said. "Because of this in-depth gene mapping knowledge we can determine the inborn or natural talents of your child. "

Even, India has started using "sports genetics" to ascertain what sport their children will do best in when they grow up.

Doctors use information contained in the so-called "sports gene ACTN3" to predict what kind of game the child would excel in as an adult.

"Analysis of the ACTN3 gene can be used to predict the kind of muscle fibre the child will develop as he/she grows up. Based on this we can figure out the body's capacity to adapt to different sports," says a leading orthopedic surgeon in Chennai.

Till date, at least 100 parents across India have got their children's special genes [basic, functional units of heredity, each occupying a specific place on a chromosome.] tested.

How is it done?
The DNA talent test is done with a simple saliva [mixture of water, protein, and salts that makes food easy to swallow; begins digestion] swab costing Rs. 2,000. The ideal age to take the test is from 4 to 10 years.

The sample can collect as many as 10,000 cells that enable scientists to isolate up to 40 different genes.

By studying the genetic code, scientists can extract specialized DNA information about a child's IQ, athletic ability, artistic ability, emotional control, focus and other talents and even health and disease related factors.

China leads in DNA testing: CNN
Though the technology is fast getting popular all over the world, but in China, most parents are using this specialized DNA Talent Testing so they can steer their child along an athletic and scholastic path to which they are genetically suited, reported CNN.

In fact, the Chinese government has special programs for talented children as young as 2 years. Under the program, lucky parents are given scholarships and may even be paid a government salary, if needed.

If some are labeling the test as an attempt by performance-obsessed parents to overburden children already under pressure, many have welcomed the futuristic approach with both the hands.

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