Humans carry 100 genes linked to cancer, diabetes

Thursday, October 28, 2010

LONDON - All of us are carrying up to 100 genes responsible for cancer and diabetes and around 300 genes which are too flawed to work.

Hundreds of researchers from across the world, including British experts, have combined forces to analyse the tiny genetic differences between individuals.

The results will offer the deepest insight yet into the human genome, or genetic blueprint, and could shed new light on what makes us human, reports the Daily Mail.

And the 1,000 genomes project will also help scientists work out why some people are more susceptible to diseases than others.

Results from the pilot phase of the research, which involved reading the DNA of more than 800 volunteers from around the world, were published in the journals Nature and Science.

They show that, on an average, each individual has between 250 and 300 genes that are so flawed that they don’t work at all.

Each of us also has around 75 to 100 genes that are known to have links to inherited diseases. In many cases, they will not cause any problems.

But learning more about how they, and other flaws, trigger disease could lead to new drugs, genetic tests and even ways of preventing illness. The human genome is estimated to contain up to 25,000 genes in total.

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