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Biology 2nd Baccalaureate

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2.10.2. Human Genome Project

Human Genome Project

The Human Genome Project was a scientific research project whose main objective was to determine the sequence of nitrogenous base pairs in DNA and to identify and map the approximately 25,000 genes of the human genome from a physical and functional point of view. It was about knowing the nucleotide sequence of our DNA and which genes code for proteins.

The project began in 1990, when an International Public Consortium was created, made up of the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, France, Germany, China and other countries, with the objective of obtaining the complete sequence of the human genome. At the same time, another similar project was promoted by the private company Celera Genomics, which intended to do business with patents on genes.

Finally, in 2001, the complete sequence of the human genome was made public jointly by public and private companies.

Some of the main conclusions obtained from the Human Genome Project are:

  • We have about 25,000 genes of variable size, made up of about 3 billion nucleotides.
  • We share more than 99.9% with all other people, they are identical. 0.1% is what makes people different from others.
  • We share many genes with other species. for example, we share more than 90% of genes with mice and 98% with chimpanzees.
  • Only less than 2% of DNA codes for proteins, the rest its function is not yet known.
  • Each gene encodes information for many proteins, not just one.


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Biology and Geology teaching materials for Compulsory Secondary Education (ESO) and Baccalaureate students.