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Jun. 26th, 2001 | 01:53 am

I might have outed myself at work unintentionally.

One of my coworkers needed to make sure that the PCR machine was properly capable of synthesizing DNA. After I gave the DNA sample I realized that if they actually look for chromosomal structure, they might notice I don't have the proper XX pattern. (Or at least I think it's unlikely that I do.)

I'm not sure how good the DNA collection scheme of swishing some salt water around in your mouth is. Somehow I doubt that it's going to be returning complete copies of someones genome.. And then I think PCR is a bit unreliable for large chunks of DNA (Though I'm not sure where I got that impression, so it could quite easily be wrong.)

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from: marnanel
date: Jun. 26th, 2001 03:38 am (UTC)

Even if they did check for the XX pattern, that isn't the same as outing yourself, is it? -- or is there a direct "if and only if" implication?

Marn, who knows little about genetics

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from: soulsong
date: Jun. 26th, 2001 04:18 am (UTC)

There are plenty of people who were born apparently female but have XY chromosomes. Some of them were highly embarrassed when DNA tested for sporting competitions and outed as genetically male. They literally had no idea. It works the other way too of course. XX people who spent their lives looking and feeling entirely male. There really are no hard and fast rules, and plenty of inbetweens.

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from: anonymous
date: Jun. 27th, 2001 10:49 am (UTC)

Ack! I would never let anyone have my genetic material willingly. I think it is a real invasion of privacy.

Chromosonal sex is just a complete myth anyway.
I think people just desperately hang onto it because there is this idea in society of "genetic sex" ("why do men have nipples?" and other such nonsense) and so people seem to constantly look for ways to back up the idea with some actual science. Once genetic sex was obviously nonsense, someone came up with chromosonal sex to make themselves feel better or something! Chromosonal sex is at least based vaguely on some science. It's not really based on very good science though. I mean apart from the fact that there are many people who are neither xx or xy, (just forget about them they aren't really people and are abnormal) some people actually have the opposite chromosonal type from their genitalia.

Actually the reason it works at all, is that TDF is usually on the Y chromosone (but not always, in some wierd situations in can be on the X chromosone) this single gene triggers the release of male hormones during development of the feuteus and changes its sex. However, having a Y chromosone doesn't mean you will have TDF or that it will be turned on, or that it will be functional when it is turned on or that your body will respond to the hormones released etc etc etc.

And if you want more evidence that chromosones are unrelated to sex, just look at birds. Male birds are most commonly xx and female birds most commonly xy. It's clearly a tenuous link at best.

Still even people who understand this tend to ignore it, and you get comments about people such as Jamie Lee Curtis of "she is really a man" or such like.

*Phew* end of rant! ;)

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