The race to sequence the human genome is heating up: the private firm Celera Genomics announced that it has 90% percent of the human genome in its database. The international consortium that proposes to publish the entire sequence on the Internet is gearing up to publish its preliminary sequence in the spring of 2000.
In a publicly released statement, Celera said its sequence contains >10 million high-quality sequences developed from randomly selected fragments of all human chromosomes. “The whole genome shotgun technique focuses on sequencing the entire genome at once, allowing for real-time discovery of human genes across the entire genome,” said J. Craig Venter, PhD, Celera’s president and chief scientific officer. “The early phase of sequencing the human genome using the whole genome shotgun process is especially important for gene discovery. We are rapidly coming to an end of that phase. Our statistical analysis and comparison to known genes suggest that greater than 97 percent of all human genes are represented in our database.”
Francis Collin, MD, PhD, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, pledges that he will not rest until the entire genome is published on the Internet, where it can belong to the world of research.
- Copyright © 2000 by American Heart Association