DNA Microarray wonders
Until recently, geneticists have been limited to studying the genome of an organism “one gene at a time” through mutational analysis. But with the accumulation of vast amounts of DNA sequence information in the last ten years, molecular geneticists have expanded their studies of gene function to the cell-wide level. This global approach to studying gene expression and gene interaction is called functional genomics.
One technological advance that has allowed the mining of the DNA database is the invention of DNA microarrays. These arrays, or chips, are samples of DNA laid out as a series of microscopic spots bound to a small glass slide. One slide can contain thousands of individual spots of DNA segments, each corresponding to a different section of the genome. These microarrays present an opportunity to examine the expression of every gene under a given set of environmental or developmental conditions. (Carleton College)