20 Fun Facts About DNA That Will Surprise You
Welcome to our mind-boggling facts about human nature! In the first collection, we’ll debunk various myths many of us have about something we can’t even see, yet it determines our very core. We’re talking, of course, about DNA—or deoxyribonucleic acid—the microscopic record of our biological being.
Fun Facts About DNA
1. DNA is present in everything living.
2. If stretched out, the human DNA from a single cell would reach about 2 meters in length…
3. … and the DNA in your whole body could reach all the way to Pluto and back.
4. Have you heard of the Immortality Drive? This DNA time capsule has existed since 2008—at the International Space Station! It holds the DNA sequence data of a handful of famous people, e.g. Stephen Hawking, Lance Armstrong, and Stephen Colbert.
5. Mutations, or DNA changes, actually happen hundreds of times a day. Thanks to their repair mechanisms, cells are able to defend themselves from this impact in the largest majority of cases.
6. Viewed as a memory drive, a gram of DNA could contain up to 700TB of data.
7. An astonishing 3 billion DNA base pairs make up the entire human genome.
8. It takes cca. 1,000 years for 75% of genetic information in the DNA to become lost.
9. On average, full siblings typically share 50% of their DNA, while half-siblings share 25% of it.
10. Humans share 98% of their genome with chimps. They also share a great fraction of it with cows, dogs, cats, slugs, and thousands of other beings.
11. Human DNA facts 101: Identical twins have a 100% DNA match.
12. Only 1.5%–7% of our genome is considered to be exclusively human.
13. Scientists discovered that our natural lifespan imprinted in our DNA is 38 years.
14. Contrary to what many of us think, genes make up less than 2% of our DNA.
15. Scientists learned that up to 8% of the human DNA actually comes from ancient viruses.
16. DNA test kits can tell you about your potential health risks, ancestry, and even help you find your relatives.
17. In 2019, a woman in Greece gave birth to a healthy boy with three different sets of DNA—meaning he has three biological parents. This is the first such case recorded.
18. There’s a rare condition called chimerism, which leads to having two sets of DNA (as two different people would). People with this condition are known as chimeras.
19. Bone marrow transplant recipients also carry the donor’s DNA.
20. Contrary to the wide-spread belief that DNA was discovered in the 20th century, the molecule was actually first identified by Friedrich Miescher in 1869.
Did our facts about DNA motivate you to explore your own genetic heritage? Check out our list of reliable DNA test kits and embark on a journey of self-discovery unlike any other.