University of Washington Researchers Play Leading Role in Major Study of Human Genome Function
Published: Jun 14, 2007
Scientists at the University of Washington and other members of an international consortium have completed a multi-year research effort that dramatically boosts understanding of how the human genome functions. While previous studies of the human genome have focused mainly on genes, this study provides insight into the non-gene sequences making up the vast majority of the genome. Buried in non-gene sequences are so-called "regulatory elements" that contain instructions for switching genes on or off, and for controlling how DNA is packaged and replicated within a human cell. Scientists believe these DNA sequences may play a very important role in some diseases, such as prostate or colon cancer.