In the Genome Race, the Sequel Is Personal

The race to decode the human genome may not be entirely over: the loser has come up with a new approach that may let him prevail in the end.

In 2003, a government-financed consortium of academic centers announced it had completed the human genome, fending off a determined challenge from the biologist J. Craig Venter. The consortium’s genome comprised just half the DNA contained in a normal cell, and the DNA used in the project came from a group of people from different racial and ethnic backgrounds.

But the loser in the race, Dr. Venter, could still have the last word. In a paper published today, his research team is announcing that it has decoded a new version of the human genome that some experts believe may be better than the consortium’s.

Called a full, or diploid genome, it consists of the DNA in both sets of chromosomes, one from each parent, and it is the normal genome possessed by almost all the body’s cells. And the genome the team has decoded belongs to just one person: Dr. Venter.

Full article:  New York Times

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