Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Human chromosomes 2, 4 include gene deserts, signs of chimp chromosome merger

The first detailed studies of two of the largest human chromosomes have revealed enormous gene "deserts" lacking any protein-coding sequences and relics of the merger of two ape chromosomes to form a single human chromosome.

Scientists from the Genome Sequencing Center (GSC) at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis will publish the completed DNA sequences of human chromosomes 2 and 4 in the April 7 issue of Nature.

With this publication, the GSC completes its contributions to initial human genome sequencing and early inventory of potentially interesting genetic features in the 23 human chromosomes. Researchers at the GSC were primarily responsible for chromosomes 2, 4, 7 and Y, producing the initial analyses of more than 20 percent of the human genome.


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