Wednesday, May 08, 2002
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Much more is known about the genetic make-up of the mouse than about human genes because mice are used in laboratories around the world.
But since humans are very similar to mice, comparing the mouse and human genome sequences should tell researchers a great deal about how people's bodies work.
``This information will allow researchers to gain insights into the function of many human genes because the mouse carries virtually the same set of genes as the human but can be used in laboratory research,'' the National Human Genome Research Institute, which announced the result, said in a statement.
The NHGRI is one of the National Institutes of Health and is helping lead the human and mouse genome efforts. A genome is the collection of all genetic material, and a draft genome sequence is something like a rough map. Some experts have likened a draft sequence to a map that shows the major highways but does not name roads, cities or towns.
Researchers are still not sure how many genes a human being has, much less where they all are. The collection of nucleotides that make up the genome include not only genes but also repeat sequences, so-called ``junk DNA,'' and factors that control the genes. Reuters
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