Genomics History & Milestones
October International Human Genome Project launches with the goal of reaching a significant milestone: a complete human genome sequence by 2005.
Pictured: The first printout of the human genome to be presented as a series of books, displayed at the Wellcome Collection, London (Wikipedia)
September Launch of the UC Santa Cruz Genome Browser.
January Copy of first draft of the human genome sequence presented to President Clinton and deposited in the Smithsonian.
June 19 Genome scientists gathered at Beyond Genome 2001 in San Francisco hear David Haussler’s brief history of the human genome. Wired reports that “Thanks to Jim Kent, a UC-Santa Cruz student now hailed as a genome hero, a partial assembly was completed with no time to spare…” However, “the assembly phase is still not finished and it seems to be a more difficult task than expected.” In light of the difficulty, researchers met last week “to discuss this problematic phase and compare each of their efforts.”
The Symposium included a scientific workshop and a public forum. Panelists at the forum were Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute; Robert Sinsheimer, chancellor emeritus and professor emeritus of biology, UC Santa Cruz; Gene Myers, vice-president of informatics research, Celera Genomics; and Mary-Claire King, professor of Medicine and Genetics, University of Washington. The moderator was Richard Harris, science reporter for National Public Radio and an alumnus of UCSC. The video and panel discussion recordings are available online.
December 15 On the final round of Jeopardy that aired December 15th, 2000 under the category “Science News,” the answer was “Made available for download by scientists at the University of California at Santa Cruz, the 739MB file of this project consists of A’s, T’s, G’s and C’s.” All three contestants, including a cooking instructor from Chicago and a school teacher from Mississippi, knew the question was “What is the Human Genome Project?”
UCSC Genome Bioinformatics Group With the human genome sequence available, comparable genome browser projects spring up, most notably those at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), and at the European Bioinformatics Institute (EBI), leading to friendly competition that sharpens efforts on all sides. In addition to the human genome browser, the UCSC group and collaborators develop browsers for other species, allowing comparative genomics studies — comparative study that elucidates our own origins.
May Genomics Institute publishes ﬁndings about ultra-conserved elements in the human genome that have remained unchanged through long periods of evolutionary history—one of Science magazine’s breakthroughs of the year.
March UCSC Cancer Genomics Browser makes its historic debut, built on the UCSC Genomics Browser platform and capable of visualizing data from cancer clinical trials.
April An international team of collaborators, including David Haussler, launch the Genome 10K project to reach the milestone of sequencing the genomes of 10,000 vertebrate species. The initiative is funded in part by the first-ever grant from the UC Santa Cruz Foundation Board Opportunity Fund (BOF).
April Beth Shapiro publishes How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction; CALeDNA project launched.
September Launch of the Human Pangenome Project led by UC Santa Cruz.