Progress, and Applications
of the Human Genome Project
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy Human Genome Program
Human Genome News Archive Edition
Sequence Patenting and Technology Transfer. Rebecca Eisenberg (University of Michigan Law School) focused on technology transfer, proprietary rights to DNA sequences, and access to sequence databases. She pointed out that the U.S. government is uniquely situated to enrich the public domain and that, by restricting access to valuable discoveries, the current federal pro-patent policy may sometimes undermine rather than support incentives to develop new products. Eisenberg also observed that companies may not need to protect a potentially lucrative product by obtaining patents for every step of development.
Hood described his group's efforts to train high school teachers to lead their students in the shotgun sequencing of small DNA fragments encoding genes. He asked investigators to send appropriate DNA fragments if they would like to become involved with the project.
Palazzolo praised collaborations among LBL, the Drosophila genome center, and University of California, Berkeley (UCB), as well as the cooperative support of DOE and NIH. DOE supports organism-independent technology development for directed and human genomic sequencing, while NIH supports Drosophila sequencing. The 120-Mb euchromatic Drosophila genome is the first to be physically mapped with single-copy-vector large clones (PACs), which have proven stable and nonchimeric. The project has generated about 1600 STSs for an average of 1 per 55 kb and has assigned to contigs over 61% of the 6000 P1 clones for an estimated 85% coverage of the Drosophila genome.
Joseph Jaklevic reported recent progress in automating scaleup of the LBL directed-sequencing strategy, which uses gel-based PCR assays extensively for robust contig mapping. Jaklevic described work on the group's 12-channel oligosynthesizer and 3- and 4-channel thermal cyclers. The thermal cyclers are being combined with Biomek and ORCA robots to reduce material handling and tracking.
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Human Genome Program, U.S. Department of Energy, Human Genome News (v6n5).
Last modified: Wednesday, October 29, 2003
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