Hennepin County libraries offer free series on genetics

How can genetics and knowledge of your family’s health history help you better understand your health risks?  “DNA Day,” a series of eight free programs presented in April and May at Hennepin County libraries in partnership with the Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association, will offer insight on hereditary health factors.

Genetic counselors and genetic counseling students, plus an artist who creates art by combining genetic data with imagery, will speak. Topics are prenatal genetics, autism and related diseases, family health history, risk of cancer, cancer genetics, and how art can express scientific concepts.

DNA Day, April 20, commemorates the April 2003 completion of the Human Genome Project, an international research effort that mapped all genes in human DNA to increase understanding of the role of genetic material in health and disease.

Hennepin County Library’s DNA Day programs

DNA Day: Prenatal Genetics
Eden Prairie Library
Thursday, April 19, 6 p.m.

Learn the many ways women and couples can assess their child's health during or prior to pregnancy. A certified genetic counselor will discuss personal or family history risk factors, maternal screening and prenatal testing options. Register Online or call 612-543-6275. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

DNA Day: Genetics of Autism and Related Diseases
Brooklyn Park Library
Saturday, April 21, 2 p.m.

A discussion of the symptoms, genetics and challenges faced by individuals with autism and other related diseases. Register Online or call 612-543-6225. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

DNA Day: Family Health History and the Risk of Cancer
Ridgedale Library
Tuesday, April 24, 6:30–7:30 p.m.

Knowing your family health history can help you determine if you're at risk for hereditary cancer. Learn from a genetic counselor what questions to ask your relatives when collecting your family history. Register Online or call 612-543-8800. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

DNA Day: Cancer, What Is Your Risk?
Brooklyn Park Library
Wednesday, April 25, 7 p.m.

What is the difference between hereditary and sporadic cancers? What family health factors may indicate hereditary cancer syndrome? Two hereditary cancer syndromes (breast and colon) will be highlighted. Risks, health screenings, what to do if tests come back positive will be addressed. Register Online or call 612-543-6225. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

DNA Day: Why Collect Family Health History?
Minneapolis Central Library - Pohlad Hall
Thursday, April 26, 7 p.m.

What do you need to know about your family's past that may help you improve your health and your children's future? A genetic counselor from the University of Minnesota will talk about free tools for collecting information and the important questions to ask. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

DNA Day: Find Your Inner Neanderthal
Minneapolis Central Library - Pohlad Hall
Saturday, April 28, 11 a.m.

Lynn Fellman creates art that combines genetic data with creative imagery. Fellman will discuss basic genetic concepts, how art can uniquely express science concepts, and why many of us may find Neanderthal genetics in our DNA. Q&A session will follow. Register Online or call 612-543-8000. This project is funded with money from Minnesota's Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

DNA Day: Family Health History
Eden Prairie Library
Monday, April 30, 7 p.m.

Few people gather family history. Certified genetic counselors will demonstrate how to use the surgeon general’s Family Health Portrait Tool to gain valuable information useful to you, your family and your physician. Find related books and more at the Library. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

DNA Day: Cancer Genetics
Ridgedale Library
Tuesday, May 1, 7 p.m.

Inherited conditions increase the occurrence of specific cancers. Learn what to look for in your family history and whether your family will benefit from increased screening and cancer prevention. Also covered: genetic counseling, testing and how to collect your family history. Register Online or call 612-543-8800. Presented in partnership with Minnesota Genetic Counselors Association.

 

Published Apr. 12, 2012