Human Genome Project Essay

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Human Genome Project Essay

The Human Genome Initiative is a worldwide research effort that has the goal of analyzing the sequence of human DNA and determining the location of all human genes. Begun in 1990, the U.S. Human Genome project was originally planned to last 15 years but now is projected to be complete in 13 years. This project was started to find the 80,000 - 100,000 human genes and to determine the sequence of the 3 - billion chemical bases that make up human DNA. The information generated by the human genome project is expected to be the source book for biomedical fields, including those such as developmental biology and neurobiology, where scientists are just beginning to understand the underlying molecular mechanisms. The
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In the spring of 1987, a report on the human genome initiative was prepared by the Health and Environmental Research Advisory Committee (HERAC) of the Department of Energy (DOE). In early 1988, further discussion culminated in the publication of two additional, widely circulated, influential reports. The U.S. Congress Office of Technology Assessment (OTA) report presented a comprehensive and detailed analysis of the scientific developments that had led to the promise of "mapping and sequencing" the human genome and presented an outline for a multi-phase research plan for accomplishing the goal of sequencing human DNA over the course of the following two decades. In fiscal year 1988, the Congress of the United States launched the human genome project by appropriating funds to both the DOE and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) specifically for support of research efforts to determine the structure of complex genomes. The NIH was delegated $17.2 million and the DOE received $10.7 million in 1988 by the human genome research institute.

It is generally agreed that the overall goal of the Human Genome Initiative is to acquire fundamental information needed to further our basic scientific understanding of human genetics and of the role of various genes in health and disease. As refined through the discussions over the last half of the 1980's and defined in the NRC report, the Human Genome Initiative has several interrelated goals:

Construction of a

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