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DNA isolated from a small sample of saliva or blood can yield information, fairly inexpensively, about a person's relative risk of developing dozens of diseases or medical conditions. GIPhotoStock/Cultura RF/Getty Images hide caption

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GIPhotoStock/Cultura RF/Getty Images

A 36-year-old woman who had her DNA tested by Ancestry.com says she was shocked to learn that her biological father was her parents' fertility doctor. Jose A. Bernat Bacete/Getty Images hide caption

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Jose A. Bernat Bacete/Getty Images

As mother and daughter, Carmen and Gisele Grayson thought their DNA ancestry tests would be very similar. Boy were they surprised. Meredith Rizzo/NPR hide caption

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Meredith Rizzo/NPR

My Grandmother Was Italian. Why Aren't My Genes Italian?

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Scott Bakal for NPR

Would You Want To Know The Secrets Hidden In Your Baby's Genes?

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Czar Nicholas II is shown with his family in the 1910s. All were executed shortly after the 1917 Russian Revolution. Remains of the czar, his wife, Alexandra (top right) and their children — Olga (from left), Maria, Anastasia, Alexei and Tatiana — have all been identified. Now the Russian Orthodox Church has ordered new DNA tests to confirm the identities of Maria and Alexei. Fine Art Images/Heritage Images/Getty Images hide caption

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Fine Art Images/Heritage Images/Getty Images

Will DNA Tests Finally Settle Controversy Surrounding Russia's Last Czars?

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A diver swims in a kelp forest in California's Channel Island National Park, where several of the state's marine protected areas are located. National Park Service hide caption

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National Park Service

In California's Protected Waters, Counting Fish Without Getting Wet

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A Maasai boy and his dog, near the skeleton of an elephant killed by poachers outside of Arusha, Tanzania, in 2013. Jason Straziuso/AP hide caption

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Jason Straziuso/AP

DNA Tracking Of Ivory Helps Biologists Find Poaching Hotspots

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Edwin Hopkins with his mother, Alice, and father, Frank Jr. Hopkins was killed aboard the USS Oklahoma during the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, but his remains never were identified. Courtesy Tom Gray hide caption

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Courtesy Tom Gray

Family Of Unaccounted For USS Oklahoma Sailor Wouldn't 'Let Him Go'

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Christopher Abernathy (center) is released from the Stateville Correctional Center on Wednesday in Crest Hill, Ill. Terrence Antonio James/TNS /Landov hide caption

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Terrence Antonio James/TNS /Landov