So, are Olympic athletes genetically better at sport? According to an article in Nature, “almost every male Olympic sprinter and power athlete ever tested carries the 577R allele, a variant of the gene ACTN3“. This gene is expressed in skeletal muscle fibre and could have an effect on athletic performance – in total, more than 200 genes have been linked with athletic performance, including variants that improve endurance, or increase the numbers of red blood cells, so upping oxygen carrying capabilities in the blood. Read more on genetics at the Olympics in Genome Engineering.

London 2012 unveils anti-doping laboratory with laboratory service providers GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and laboratory operators King's College London

Source: London 2012

Olympic Games 27 July – 12 August