JUN 2013

DAYSPA is the business resource for spa & wellness professionals! Each issue covers the latest in skin care, spa treatments, wellness services and management strategies.

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FOLLOWING THE BLUEPRINT The Genetic Factor Let's begin by looking at genomes, the complete set of DNA. All of the genes located on chromosomes make up a human genome. The 13-year Human Genome Project began in 1990, as an international research collaboration led by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health. The project's goals were to: • Identify all of the 20,000 to 25,000 genes in human DNA • Determine the sequences of the three billion chemical base pairs that make up human DNA • Store this information in databases • Improve tools for data analysis • Transfer related technologies to the private sector • Address the ethical, legal and social issues that may arise from the project Quite an undertaking, yes? And not only does DNA research help us to address health and human conditions, but understanding an organism's capabilities may also lead to advances in agriculture, energy production, forensics and environmental stewardship. The project spawned a worldwide expansion of the medical field known as genomic medicine, as genetics now factor into the diagnosis, prediction, intervention and treatment of hundreds of diseases. And from predisposition to skin cancer to extreme sun sensitivity to age-related decreases in DNA repair capability, the practice of genetic skincare may help clients in ways never before thought possible. Not Just Skin Deep Heredity does, in fact, determine a lot about skin. The inherited trait of thick, olive skin will spend its life behaving and reacting completely differently from skin that is pale and translucent. Aside from what's visible on the outside, DNA mapping can dictate a lifetime of skin care. "DNA information can reveal genetic tendencies or variations, known as single-nucleotide polymorphisms, or SNPs, which are relative to firmness and elasticity, wrinkling, sun damage and free radical damage," says Judith Steinhouser, Ph.D., clinical director at Dermagenics ( "This information can reveal what some of these higher risks may be at a younger age. Knowing what tendencies are present can determine the skincare products, nutrition and supplementation needed to stabilize skin health and prevent issues such as hypersensitivity reactions, premature aging and the risk of developing skin cancer, to name a few factors." In addition to genetics controlling the function of all cells, DNA information also directs cell division. For instance, individual cells separate into two sets in a process • Use FreeInfo #35 82 DAYSPA | JUNE 2013

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