News Archive - 2000

News Archive - 2000

Two-thirds of Human Genome Given to Researchers Worldwide

Two-thirds of Human Genome Given to Researchers Worldwide

Cambridge scientists are celebrating a monumental milestone in the international Human Genome Project to decode the genetic instructions of humankind.

The Sanger Centre team and their research colleagues from around the world have today announced that they have sequenced two billion 'letters' of human DNA. The sequence is deposited in public databases and is being used daily by researchers worldwide in the quest to understand human disease.

Meningitis Bacterium Code Cracked

Meningitis Bacterium Code Cracked

Researchers in the UK and Germany have decoded all the genes of a bacterium that causes the most common form of meningitis.

Neisseria meningitidis infects half a million people each year, and is associated with major epidemics of meningitis in developing countries. The research paves the way for new methods of detecting, preventing and treating infections.

Wellcome applauds USA and UK governments' commitment to free sequence data

Wellcome applauds USA and UK governments' commitment to free sequence data

Today the United States government and UK Government announced that all DNA sequence data from the Human Genome Project would remain free for use worldwide.

Ensuring that the data from the Human Genome Project remains in the public domain will allow the fruits of this work to be fully exploited by research groups worldwide to develop real healthcare advances.

Genome talks collapse over commercial ownership

Genome talks collapse over commercial ownership

The publicly funded Human Genome Project (HGP) today announced that negotiations with the commercial DNA sequencing company Celera Genomics had broken down. The HGP had hoped that the combined effort of the public and private sector would bring more rapid benefits from the programme.

The talks stumbled when Celera refused to accept a statement of 'Shared Principles' prepared by the HGP participants. The HGP team made repeated attempts to discuss differences with the President of Celera, Dr J. Craig Venter, but received no response from him throughout January and February.

Scientists reveal clues to food poisoning bug

Scientists reveal clues to food poisoning bug

Scientists have identified the genetic make-up of the bug responsible for the majority of food poisoning outbreaks. The work paves the way for treatments that may eventually prevent or cure gastro-enteritis attacks that are, at best, extremely unpleasant, and, at worst, can kill.

The first food-borne pathogen to be sequenced, C. jejuni is harboured by half of the poultry destined for human consumption. It is responsible for around 60,000 reported cases of food poisoning in the UK each year - over three times more than the infamous Salmonella. The bacterium thrives in the human gut where it can cause severe diarrhoea and, in rare cases, Guillain-Barre syndrome, a neuromuscular condition that can lead to death.

New research will tackle causes of disease from the UK to the tropics

New research will tackle causes of disease from the UK to the tropics

Scientists at the Sanger Centre near Cambridge are aiming to understand the genetic make-up of micro-organisms responsible for some of the world's most common and sometimes, life-threatening, diseases.

£4,254,527 has been announced by the Wellcome Trust, through its Beowulf Genomics initiative, to sequence the genomes of Burkholderia pseudomallei, Neisseria meningitidis serogroup C, a significant proportion of Leishmania major and a project, jointly funded with Edinburgh University, to compare the sequence of Caenorhabditis elegans with those of important parasitic nematodes by expressed sequence TAG-based discovery.

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