Manic fringe and friends are no more

This week’s Nature reports another small blow against idiosyncrasy:

"Genes with whimsical names that might cause offence to people carrying mutations in them will be rebranded, the committee that adjudicates on such matters has decided. Names such as lunatic fringe, radical fringe, Sonic hedgehog and Indian hedgehog will no longer be used to refer to human genes.

A survey by the Gene Nomenclature Committee of the Human Genome Organisation, based at University College London, came up with ten genes that have "inappropriate, demeaning and pejorative" names, many of which are linked to eponymous developmental defects. Most genes on the list were initially discovered in fruitflies, for which geneticists have a tradition of coming up with jokey names. The human versions will now be known simply by their abbreviations."

I think it is quite appropriate that the newsletter of this organisation is called Nome News. Theme colour grey, of course.

5 thoughts on “Manic fringe and friends are no more

  1. Gawd. How depressing. I think I’d rather like to know I’d got a Sonic hedgehog mutation – it’s a lot more interesting than a SH1

  2. “I think it is quite appropriate that the newsletter of this organisation is called Nome News.”
    Well you know what they say “theres no place like Nome” 🙂

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