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Health Agencies Update
July 19, 2000

"Book of Life" Rough Draft

JAMA. 2000;284(3):296. doi:10.1001/jama.284.3.296

Two rival teams of scientists announced last month they had assembled a rough draft of the "book of life"—the human genetic code. For this vital instruction manual, researchers have been working to catalog the identity and location of each of the estimated 3 billion chemical base pairs in human DNA.

The groups are the publicly financed Human Genome Project, largely funded by the National Institutes of Health and the London-based Wellcome Trust, and Celera Genomics of Rockville, Md. The public consortium said it had produced a rough draft that includes some 97% of the genome, with about 85% completed in fine detail. Celera claimed that it had sequenced 99%.