Human Genome Project

Human Genome Project

Human Genome Project

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The Human Genome Project (HGP) is an international scientific research project with a primary goal of determining the sequence of chemical base pairs which make up DNA, and of identifying and mapping the approximately 20,000–25,000 genes of the human genome from both a physical and functional standpoint.

The project began in 1989 and was initially headed by Ari Patrinos, head of the Office of Biological and Environmental Research in the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. Francis Collins directed the National Institutes of Health National Human Genome Research Institute efforts. A working draft of the genome was announced in 2000 and a complete one in 2003, with further, more detailed analysis still being published. A parallel project was conducted outside of government by the Celera Corporation, which was formally launched in 1998. Most of the government-sponsored sequencing was performed in universities and research centers from the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, France, Germany, China and Pakistan. The mapping of human genes is an important step in the development of medicines and other aspects of health care.

While the objective of the Human Genome Project is to understand the genetic makeup of the human species, the project has also focused on several other nonhuman organisms such as E. coli, the fruit fly, and the laboratory mouse. It remains one of the largest single...
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