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Human Genome News Archive Edition
  Vol.10, No.1-2   February 1999
Available in PDF 
In this issue... 

Genome Project 

In the News 

Microbial Genomics 

Ethical, Legal, and Social Issues and Educational Resources 


Genetics in Medicine 


Web, Other Resources, Publications 


Meeting Calendars & Acronyms 

  • Genome and Biotechnology Meetings 
  • Training Courses and Workshops 
  • Acronyms 

HGN archives and subscriptions 
HGP Information home

Mouse Resources Critical to Understanding Human Genome

Some 60 scientists met for 3 days in March 1998 in Bethesda, Maryland, to define priorities for producing resources to make the mouse a more valuable tool for understanding mammalian biology. Convened by NIH Director Harold Varmus, the Mouse Genomics and Genetics Resources Working Group's recommendations, as summarized by cochairs William Dove (University of Wisconsin) and David Cox (Stanford University), are outlined below. Total direct costs for the first year are estimated at $49.3 million.

The first follow-up meeting was held in October 1998 to discuss implementation of the March recommendations. Representatives from DOE and the U.K.'s Medical Research Council were present to develop a coordinated strategy and share expertise in this international effort.


Recommendations for structural analysis, functional analysis, and resources include the following:

Structural Analysis

  • Generate an additional 60,000 new markers, identified as crucial for scientists who are cloning genes.
  • Genotype inbred mouse strains and generate a low-resolution (5-cM) single-nucleotide polymorphism map to determine its value for mouse research.
  • Sequence and map 3' ends of partial cDNAs and improve methods for isolating missing and full-length cDNAs.
  • Generate 12 Mb of sequence for the first year and ramp up to 400 Mb within 5 years, obtaining a completed reference mouse genomic sequence by 2008.
Functional Analysis
  • Develop standardized genome-wide mutagenesis protocols and improved tools and assays for characterizing phenotypes within new, specialized centers using the supermutagen ENU (ethyl nitrosourea, developed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory by William Russell).
  • Develop phenotyping protocols in ENU centers and by individual investigators.
  • Set up targeted mutagenesis programs to validate embryonic stem lines from different mouse strains for specialized uses.
  • Couple molecular genotyping with the construction of congenic mouse strains.
  • Develop cryopreservation methods and facilities for maintaining mutant mouse sperm and ovaries, thus reducing the cost of maintaining live animals.
  • Build a new repository for live mouse strains.
  • Evaluate and expand some existing databases.
  • Train researchers in cryopreservation technology and animal pathology.

Note: More Mouse information can be found at:

The electronic form of the newsletter may be cited in the following style:
Human Genome Program, U.S. Department of Energy, Human Genome News (v10n1-2).

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Acronym List

Human Genome Project 1990–2003

The Human Genome Project (HGP) was an international 13-year effort, 1990 to 2003. Primary goals were to discover the complete set of human genes and make them accessible for further biological study, and determine the complete sequence of DNA bases in the human genome. See Timeline for more HGP history.

Human Genome News

Published from 1989 until 2002, this newsletter facilitated HGP communication, helped prevent duplication of research effort, and informed persons interested in genome research.