The Human Genome

The HGP or Human Genome Project was a 13-year project by the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institutes of Health. During the goals were to identify all the approximately 20,000-25,000 genes in human DNA, determine the sequences of the 3 billion chemical base pairs that make up human DNA, store this information in a genome databases, improve tools for data analysis, transfer related technologies to the private sector, and address the ethical, legal, and social issues that may arise from these type of projects.

The word genome refers to all DNA present in an organism. The DNA is the “Genetic Blueprint” that determines the genotypic of each organism. DNA consists of two strings of nucleotides, or bases (abbreviated A, C, G, and T).
The bases composing DNA have specific binding capabilities: A always binds to T, and C always binds to G. These binding capabilities are useful for scientists to understand since, if the nucleotide sequence of one DNA strand is determined, complementary binding allows the sequence of other strand to be deduced.

In humans, DNA is organized into 24 structural units called chromosomes. Each chromosome consists of compacted coils of DNA. While much of this DNA has no known function (these stretches of DNA are conveniently referred to as spacer DNA or junk DNA), a significant portion of the DNA codes for genes.

Each gene provides the information necessary to produce a protein, which is responsible for carrying out cellular functions. The complement of proteins in an organism is very important, with diseases often manifesting when a protein does not function properly.

Source from: Wikipedia

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