What is the 1000 Genomes Project?

Genetics and the Human Genome Read more from
Chapter DNA, RNA, Chromosomes, and Genes

According to the Wellcome Trust in the United Kingdom that runs the project, the 1000 Genomes Project is a scientific effort to sequence the genomes of at least 1,000 people to understand and create the most detailed and medically useful catalog of human genetic variation to date—hopefully to be used in future studies of people with particular diseases. They can do this for a good reason: any two humans are more than 99 percent the same at the genetic level—but the very small percent that is not the same can tell a great deal about such things as susceptibility to disease or even reactions to environmental factors. Although the goal started with 1,000 people, by 2011, the project increased its sequencing to include 2,500 genomes, sourced from about twenty different populations around the world. For example, populations being sequenced include Chinese in the metropolitan Denver, Colorado area; Japanese in Tokyo; Maasai in Kinyawa, Kenya; people of Mexican ancestry in Los Angeles; Utah residents with ancestry from northern and western Europe; and people of African ancestry in the southwestern United States.


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