National DNA Day commemorates the completion of the Human Genome Project in April 2003 and the discovery of the double helix of DNA in 1953. This year marks the 16th anniversary of DNA Day, which will be on Thursday, April 25, 2019.

ASHG commemorates DNA Day each year through its DNA Day Essay Contest, which invites students in grades 9-12 worldwide to examine, question, and reflect on important concepts in genetics. Entries are evaluated by over 300 ASHG members who volunteer as judges, and results announced on April 25.

Join the genetics and genomics community in celebrating the 16th anniversary of National DNA Day!

Before DNA Day

Submit your Essay - The submission website has closed.

Find a Local Event – The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) assembles a map of events taking place at schools, universities, and other locations across the country. Events are added as we get closer to DNA Day. Find one near you and join in!

Register an Event – If you are planning your own event for DNA Day, get the word out by registering it on NHGRI’s website. Unsure where to start? Check out the DNA Day Starter Kit.

’15 for 15’ Celebration – Since 2003, there have been many important discoveries in genetics and genomics that have the potential to transform our world. In 2018, we and our DNA Day partners highlighted a new advance each day along with related resources that show how far we’ve come. Look through this website to see what information was gathered last year.

Explore ASHG Infographics – Download, print, and share our new infographics summarizing several of the ‘15 for 15’ topics that are important in clinical practice:

DNA sequencing
Cancer Genomics - Tumor Profiling
Rare Disease
Non-invasive Prenatal Genetic Testing


Along with the members of the GMEC consortium, we would like to thank June C. Carroll, MD, University of Toronto and Vivian J. Weinblatt, MS, CGC, Integrated Genetics for their help with these infographics.

DNA Day – April 25

Read the 2018 Winning DNA Day Essays – The Winners' page includes the winning and honorable mentions from last year's contest. See all winning essays from previous years on the DNA Day Essay Contest homepage under the category "Past Winners".

2019 DNA Day Winners Announced - At noon U.S. Eastern Time, we’ll reveal the winners and honorable mentions of our 14th annual DNA Day Essay Contest. Join us in celebrating the next generation of scientists!


ASHG2019 logo

Get Involved in ASHG

Join ASHG – The world’s largest human genetics community, ASHG works to advance human genetics in science, health, and society through excellence in research, education, and advocacy. Members can also serve as contest judges!

Attend the ASHG Annual Meeting – ASHG 2019, held in Houston, Texas from October 15-19, 2019, provides a forum for the presentation and discussion of cutting-edge science in all areas of human genetics.