The Human Genome Project

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The Human Genome Project was originally planned to last 15 years, but rapid technological advances accelerated the completion date to 2003.

Project goals

To further science's understanding of genetic sequencing and to help trace differences between various baramin, researchers developed several goals which they wished to achieve. Among these are:

  • 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.

Researchers also studied the genetic makeup of several nonhuman organisms. These include the common human gut bacterium Escherichia coli, (E. coli); Drosophila melanogaster the fruit fly; and Mus musculus, the mouse, (since it has nearly the same number of genes as do H. sapiens sapiens).

A unique aspect of the U.S. Human Genome Project is that it was the first large scientific undertaking to address potential ethical concerns, (which science isn't very good at). Another important aspect of the project was the federal government's long-standing dedication to the transfer of technology to the private sector. As of this writing no real-world, for-profit endeavors have been realized from this boondoggle.

In spite of "landmark" papers detailing sequence and analysis of the human genome being published in February 2001 and April 2003 the $15 billion project cost merely lined the pockets of "researchers" with little benefit to the public at-large.

The project was led by geneticist Francis Collins.