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Human Genome Project – Introduction
Human Genome Project – a collaborative undertaking among researchers around the world, organized under the joint auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health, to identify and map the human genome (genetic material that defines the human being). Altogether, more than 20 research centers in the United States, United Kingdom, China, France, Germany, and Japan participated in the DNA sequencing.
The Human Genome Project began in 1990 and concluded with the full mapping of the human genome in April 2003, 50 years after Watson and Crick unveiled their double-helix model of DNA. Researchers expect data analysis and new findings to continue for the indefinite future. The Human Genome Project’s Web site, (www.ornl.gov), regularly posts updates.
Human genome project findings: highlights
- The human genome consists of 3,164,700,000 nucleotide bases.
- The largest gene (dystrophin) contains 2.4 million nucleotide bases.
- 99.9 percent of the nucleotide bases are identical in all people.
- The human genome contains about 30,000 genes.
- Chromosome 1 contains 2,968 genes and chromosome Y contains 231 genes, the most and the fewest, respectively.
Source: The Science behind the Human Genome Project, www.ornl.gov/hgmis; updated October 27, 2004.
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