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Since the completion of the human genome project some 15 years ago much promise has been made of the potential to harness the information to enhance the field of clinical diagnostics. Indeed, numerous genomics projects have now been initiated, many of which are already yielding important information about pathologies at the molecular level. This new and exciting area of biomedical science has also given rise to the possibility of intervention with smart drugs and biological and chemical molecules designed to specific targets. We are now in the post-genomics era and the ability to rapidly sequence genomes, identify targets and design and implement many advanced therapeutic strategies is a clear reality. This has been made possible by the enormous advances in technologies such as next generation sequencing to identify clinically relevant nucleic acids and the development of bioinformatics to analyse the resulting data. Genomics and Clinical Diagnostics brings together, in a number of chapters, coverage of some of the key technologies that have been recently developed and an overview of some of the diseases to which these techniques have been applied. The book begins with chapters that set the scene, from an introduction to nucleic acids and their analysis through to key elements of genes and genomes to the coverage of molecular cloning and sequencing technologies. This theme is continued and extended in the next series of chapters that cover proteomics, bioinformatics and further advanced molecular diagnostic techniques. The newly expanding area of nanoparticles in diagnostics is covered and molecular microbial diagnostics completes the initial coverage of technologies. The theme of the book then extends into chapters that concentrate on the application of genomics to a number of diseases such as connective tissue disorders, blood disorders, microbial and parasite disease. This is completed with coverage or rare diseases and biomarker analysis in oncology. Rather than a comprehensive collection of all diseases in which molecular analysis is undertaken we have identified key areas that we believe show the power of the techniques and they way in which they can be implemented. We believe that the coverage of many of the key areas will serve as a solid foundation for those embarking on or engaged in studies of this exciting and fast-moving area. This book should be of particular interest to students of biomedical and clinical science and scientists who require a sound introduction to this rapidly advancing and expanding area.

David Whitehouse

Ralph Rapley

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