Lung health varies between people. Someone with persistent difficulty exhaling might have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a condition which leaves them, quite literally, breathless.
A person's chances of developing COPD as they grow older is
affected by whether they smoke cigarettes, but genetic variation
also plays a role. Understanding the genetic variation that
predicts lung disease gives scientists clues about the causes of
lung disease and about how to treat it.
How it works
The DNA in our cells is made up of three billion pairs of just
four types of chemical bases: known as A, C, G and T. Genetic
variation means that, where one person might have an A at a certain
place in the sequence, another person might have a G.
To identify the genetic variations that affect lung health the
scientists behind this exhibit compared millions of differences in
the DNA of almost 50,000 people and checked how healthy their lungs
At this exhibit, visitors can see how lung health is measured
and learn about genetic variation between people. You can also try
to detect the genetic variations which predict lung health.
Everybody knows that cigarette smoking is bad for us, but are some
smokers at even higher risk than others?
virtual exhibit for more videos, activities and explanations
about lung health.