15 June 2011
Vol 3, Issue 87
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About The Cover

Cover image expansion

ONLINE COVER Gemini Genomes. Fraternal twins (pictured) share much in common including secrets within their genomes that often can only be revealed by whole genome sequencing. This proved to be the case for a 14-year old fraternal twin pair diagnosed with the movement disorder dopa-responsive dystonia, which is caused by decreased dopamine synthesis. The twins did not carry mutations in the usual disease genes, but complete sequencing of their genomes (Bainbridge et al.) pinpointed a mutation in an unexpected gene that implicated decreased synthesis of serotonin in their disease. This finding alerted doctors to supplement the standard L-dopa drug regimen with a serotonin precursor resulting in greater improvement in the twins’ symptoms than with L-dopa alone. [CREDIT: C. BICKEL/SCIENCE TRANSLATIONAL MEDICINE]