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Anti-Aging Research

Human Genome Project

Begun formally in 1990, the U.S. Human Genome Project was a 13-year effort coordinated by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health. The project originally was planned to last 15 years, but rapid technological advances accelerated the completion date to 2003. Project goals were to:

  • identify all the approximately 20,000-25,000 genes in human DNA,
  • determine the sequences of the 3 billion chemical base pairs that make up human DNA,
  • store this information in databases,
  • improve tools for data analysis,
  • transfer related technologies to the private sector, and
  • address the ethical, legal, and social issues (ELSI) that may arise from the project.

To help achieve these goals, researchers also studied the genetic makeup of several nonhuman organisms. These include the common human gut bacterium Escherichia coli, the fruit fly, and the laboratory mouse.

A unique aspect of the U.S. Human Genome Project is that it was the first large scientific undertaking to address potential ELSI implications arising from project data.

Another important feature of the project was the federal government's long-standing dedication to the transfer of technology to the private sector. By licensing technologies to private companies and awarding grants for innovative research, the project catalyzed the multibillion-dollar U.S. biotechnology industry and fostered the development of new medical applications.

Sequence and analysis of the human genome working draft was published in February 2001 and April 2003 issues of Nature and Science. See an index of these papers and learn more about the insights gained from them.

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Resources

DOEgenomes.org
Site of the U.S. Human Genome Project, Genomics:GTL Program, and Microbial Genome Program--all sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs.

Human Genome Project Information
The main homepage for Human Genome Project information --what the project is; its progress, history, and goals; what issues are associated with genome research; frequently asked questions, the science behind the project; who its sponsors are.

The American Journal of Human Genetics
Since its inception in 1948, AJHG has provided a record of research and review relating to heredity and human genetics.

ESHG Home Page
Promotes research in basic and applied human and medical genetics.

Human Genetics Society of Australasia
Promote standards, research, and education.

IFHGS International Federation of Human Genetics Societies
Provides a forum for organized groups including research, clinical practice, and professional.

MRC HGU - Medical Research Council Human Genetics Unit
Undertakes research to obtain a molecular and cellular understanding of genetic factors.

Eccles Institute of Human Genetics
Features graduate program and current faculty research interests in areas of human genetics.

HUM-MOLGEN - International Communication Forum in Human Molecular ...
Features a mailing list, table of contents of leading journals, listings of meetings and seminars.

 

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