Progress, and Applications
of the Human Genome Project
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy Human Genome Program
Human Genome News Archive Edition
|Available in PDF
In this issue...
In the News
Web, Publications, Resources
Consortium Achieves Draft Mouse Sequence
In May the international Mouse Sequencing Consortium (MSC) announced the completion of a draft map (3 coverage) representing at least 95% of the mouse DNA sequence. MSC plans to use longer DNA stretches of known map position and assemble the sequence fragments into a finished, highly accurate form. The mouse is an invaluable resource for interpreting human genome data and finding human genes and other functionally important DNA regions conserved by evolution.
"The success of MSC and other public-private research consortia no doubt will lead to future cooperative efforts to solve big problems quickly, especially when the resulting data belong in the public domain," said Arthur Holden, cochairman of MSC. Comprising three private companies and six NIH institutes, MSC was formed in October 2000.
At 3 billion bases, the mouse genome is comparable in size to that of humans. Even more important, almost every human gene appears to have a counterpart in the mouse; among 4000 genes studied, fewer than 10 are present in only one of the two species. Researchers expect to find that about 85% to 90% of gene sequences are similar in mouse and human, with similarities ranging from 60% to 90%.
In addition to highlighting gene sequences, mouse-human DNA comparisons will help identify other regions responsible for turning gene expression on and off. Genome comparisons also will provide insights into the evolutionary mechanisms underlying overall gene organization.
Like all mammals, humans and mice share the same physiological systems and develop many of the same diseases. Because of its small size, high fertility rate, and ease of manipulation, the laboratory mouse offers great promise in the study of the genetic bases of disease susceptibility, development, and progress. Biotechnological methods now allow DNA sequences containing gene mutations associated with human diseases to be introduced directly into the genomes of mouse embryos. Many will develop into mice that show symptoms similar to those of affected humans, thus facilitating studies and the development of new therapies.
The new mouse data already have been used to locate the mouse equivalent of a human gene that may be related to schizophrenia. The discovery may help researchers develop a mouse model to study further the gene's association with this devastating mental disorder.
Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute, further detailed the status of various aspects of the mouse sequencing effort and available resources in "An Open Letter to the Mouse Genetics Community."
The electronic form of the newsletter may be cited in the following style:
Last modified: Wednesday, October 29, 2003
Home * Contacts * Disclaimer
Document Use and Credits
Publications and webpages on this site were created by the U.S. Department of Energy Genome Program's Biological and Environmental Research Information System (BERIS). Permission to use these documents is not needed, but please credit the U.S. Department of Energy Genome Programs and provide the website http://genomics.energy.gov. All other materials were provided by third parties and not created by the U.S. Department of Energy. You must contact the person listed in the citation before using those documents.
Base URL: www.ornl.gov/hgmis
Site sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science, Office of Biological and Environmental Research, Human Genome Program