VOLKER STEGER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY VOLKER STEGER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
DNA sequencers. Technician with DNA sequencers used in human genome research at Celera Genomics, Maryland, USA, a rival to the Human Genome Project. Celera intends to sequence every human gene by 2001. Genes are lengths of DNA (deoxyribo- nucleic acid) which perform specific tasks within an organism. Human DNA has over 100,000 genes, comprising over 3 billion base pairs. Celera sequences tiny fragments of DNA and uses super- computers to put the pieces together. This is a cruder but faster method than that used by the publicly-funded Human Genome Project. The complete human genome map will allow improved drug design and a greater understanding of genetic diseases.
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