England is poised to take a giant leap into the brave new world of genomic medicine, wherein everyone will eventually have their entire three billion letters of their genetic code unravelled in order to diagnose, treat and even predict future illnesses.
Genomics England, with the consent of participants and the support of the public, is creating a lasting legacy for patients, the NHS and the UK economy through the sequencing of 100,000 genomes: the 100,000 Genomes Project.
Genomics England was set up by the Department of Health to deliver the 100,000 Genomes Project. Initially the focus will be on rare disease, cancer and infectious disease. The project is currently in its pilot phase and will be completed by the end of 2017.
The UK is set to become the world leader in ground-breaking genetic research into cancer and rare diseases, which will transform how diseases are diagnosed and treated, thanks to a package of investment worth more than £300 million, the Prime Minister announced yesterday.
Sources and More Information:
- Human genome: UK to become world number 1 in DNA testing, Gov.UK, press release, Aug. 1, 2014.
- The 100,000 Genomes Project, GenomicsEngland,
website and PDF.
- DNA project ‘to make UK world genetic research leader’, BBC News, health-28488313, Aug. 1, 2014.
- Government backs massive new £300m gene sequencing project, Independent, Health News, Aug. 1, 2014.