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J Hum Genet. 2013 Oct;58(10):643-56. doi: 10.1038/jhg.2013.86. Epub 2013 Aug 15.

Pairomics, the omics way to mate choice.

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Medawar Institute for Medical and Environmental Research, Acangau Foundation, Paracatu, Brazil.


The core aspects of the biology and evolution of sexual reproduction are reviewed with a focus on the diploid, sexually reproducing, outbreeding, polymorphic, unspecialized, altricial and cultural human species. Human mate choice and pair bonding are viewed as central to individuals' lives and to the evolution of the species, and genetic assistance in reproduction is viewed as a universal human right. Pairomics is defined as an emerging branch of the omics science devoted to the study of mate choice at the genomic level and its consequences for present and future generations. In pairomics, comprehensive genetic information of individual genomes is stored in a database. Computational tools are employed to analyze the mating schemes and rules that govern mating among the members of the database. Mating models and algorithms simulate the outcomes of mating any given genome with each of a number of genomes represented in the database. The analyses and simulations may help to understand mating schemes and their outcomes, and also contribute a new cue to the multicued schemes of mate choice. The scientific, medical, evolutionary, ethical, legal and social implications of pairomics are far reaching. The use of genetic information as a search tool in mate choice may influence our health, lifestyle, behavior and culture. As knowledge on genomics, population genetics and gene-environment interactions, as well as the size of genomic databases expand, so does the ability of pairomics to investigate and predict the consequences of mate choice for the present and future generations.

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