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Biotech Medicine United Kingdom

DNA Project 'to Make UK World Genetic Research Leader' 65

mrspoonsi (2955715) writes A project aiming to revolutionise medicine by unlocking the secrets of DNA is under way in centres across England. Prime Minister David Cameron has said it "will see the UK lead the world in genetic research within years". The first genetic codes of people with cancer or rare diseases, out of a target of 100,000, have been sequenced. Experts believe it will lead to targeted therapies and could make chemotherapy "a thing of the past". Just one human genome contains more than three billion base pairs — the building blocks of DNA. Prof Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, said: "I can see a future where genetics is going to come into every bit of medicine from cardiology to oncology to infectious diseases." "Twenty years from now there's going to be a plethora of those, we will have a series of mutations which academics and industry will have developed therapies for, which will be targeted at you and specific for that cancer." He said chemotherapy, which attacks all dividing cells in the body, would be replaced with such therapies. "We will look back in 20 years' time and think of blockbuster chemotherapy [as] a thing of the past and we'll think 'Gosh, what an era that was'." David Cameron has announced a series of investments across government, industry and charities totalling £300m ($500m).
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DNA Project 'to Make UK World Genetic Research Leader'

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  • First steps (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Travis Mansbridge ( 830557 ) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @01:02AM (#47587371)
    There's a big difference between mapping the genomes of cancer patients and developing individualized treatments, akin to the difference between being able to read a novel and being the editor. As it is, we can't even understand most of the human genome, but I suppose this is a step in the right direction.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @02:04AM (#47587535) Journal
    This is David Cameron we are talking about. His previous Big Bold Project involved attempting to build the great firewall of Britain to save the children from internet porn. He isn't one of those people who know how to size up a task...
  • by RDW ( 41497 ) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @06:27AM (#47588005)

    You can process genome sequencing data to get the same sort of information you'd get from a karyotype (translocations, missing or extra copies of chromosomes or particular cytobands, etc.), but at much higher resolution. Unlike a traditional karyotype it generally won't be derived from a single cell, though (which has advantages and disadvantages).

  • Political Hell (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jim Sadler ( 3430529 ) on Saturday August 02, 2014 @07:48AM (#47588115)
    The US has shot itself in the head by forcing most genetic researchers to work in foreign nations. We are now somewhat of a cripple due to right wing forces and their idiotic moral wizardry. Mega billions of cash are lost to us as other nations acquire patents and develop products. While the right wing pondered the theoretical joys of morality in a stem cell other nations applied science and funding. The right wing in the US has turned us into Clown Central or maybe we should call it the Bad Comedy Club.

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