Genetic predisposition: a susceptibility to disease that is related to a genetic condition, which may or may not result in actual development of the disease.

Genetic screening: the use of a specific biological test to screen for inherited diseases or medical conditions.

Genome: the sum total of an organismís genes.

Genomics: the study of genes and their function.

Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP): guidelines ensuring the quality and purity of chemical products that are intended for use in pharmaceutical applications, and controls ensuring that methods and facilities used for production, processing, packaging, and storage result in drugs with consistent and sufficient quality, purity, and activity.

Human Genome Project: an international research effort that identified and located the full sequence of bases in the human genome.

Immune system: the cells, biological substances (such as antibodies), and cellular activities that work together to recognize foreign substances and provide resistance to disease.

In silico ('in computer'): computer-based predictions that can complement in vitro and in vivo procedures.

In vitro ('in glass'): experimental procedures carried out in test-tubes, beakers, etc.

In vivo ('in the living body'): experimental procedures carried out on living cell lines or in living animals.

Lead compound: in pre-clinical trials and clinical trials, a potential drug being tested for safety and efficacy.

Liposome: an artificial membrane. Can be used to encapsulate drugs and aid in drug delivery.

Microarray: a tool that permits the identification of DNA samples and examination of gene expression in individual tissues and different conditions.

Monoclonal antibody: an antibody that recognizes a single target. Polyclonal antibodies recognize several related targets.

Molecular evolution: the process of making discrete changes in genes to improve the functional characteristics of proteins and enzymes.

Molecular farming: using biotechnology to produce useful products from domesticated plants and animals.


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