alexa The future of genetic research in exercise science and sports medicine.
Physicaltherapy & Rehabilitation

Physicaltherapy & Rehabilitation

Journal of Sports Medicine & Doping Studies

Author(s): Trent RJ, Yu B

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Abstract BACKGROUND/AIMS: Genetic research is used to identify the relative contributions made by inherent abilities (nature) versus environmental effects (nurture) in human performance. The same approach allows a better understanding of how injuries or illnesses can result from sport or physical activity. Having identified the genes involved in athletic performance, there are the intriguing possibilities of using this information for talent search, developing individualized training programs and prevention of sports-related injuries. METHODS: There are many interacting genes involved in athletic performance. This class of genes is often described as 'complex' and the mode of inheritance is called 'multifactorial'. Discovery of these genes is difficult using the conventional case control (association) studies. Recent genomic-based developments allowing high throughput SNP analysis are very promising. Potentially more exciting is the availability in the near future of cheaper and faster whole-genome sequencing technologies. RESULTS: Genetic research in exercise science has produced a lot of data including the ability to draw a human exercise gene map. However, progress at the genetic level has been slow because gene-based association studies are not powerful enough to detect multiple small but cumulative gene effects. In future, the more efficient genomic-based research approaches will accelerate the finding of 'sports genes'. Data generated will be enormous, making it essential to have a direct link between the laboratory researcher and bioinformatics expertise. CONCLUSION: Genetics research has moved to the genomics era, i.e. the simultaneous testing of multiple genes is now possible. 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel This article was published in Med Sport Sci and referenced in Journal of Sports Medicine & Doping Studies

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