The Human Genome Project : Gene Therapy Essay

1002 Words Nov 5th, 2015 null Page
Gene Therapy Gene Therapy is a remarkable new way to to cure diseases and genetic mutations. To sequence all of the human genome, finding the order of building blocks of the nucleic acids that make up the entire genetic material of a human, was proposed in 1985. In order to reach this goal, the Human Genome Organization was established to coordinate the international efforts to sequence the genome. In 1998, the Human Genome Project was started in the United States with the aim of sequencing the entire human genome composed of 2.9 billion base pairs in 15 years (“The Sequence of The Human Genome”). The first human gene genomes identified, in the 1970’s, were connected to diseases such as cystic fibrosis. Researchers were motivated to sequence the human genome to learn more about the genetic roots of the diseases and discover more genes that might be used in gene therapy. By 1971, only fifteen human genes had been localized to specific chromosomes. Mid - 1990’2, researchers mapped the location of about two-thousand genes, only two percent of the human genome. The ability to map genes to chromosomes was boosted by new recombinant DNA technology (“Grace”). Currently, there are two different types of gene therapy: Somatic Gene Therapy and Germ Line Gene Therapy. Somatic Gene Therapy changes an individual’s genes and is not passed on to future generations. In Somatic Gene Therapy, intervention takes place only within somatic cells and the genetic changes do not transfer to…

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