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Eric Green Hopes to Settle Finishing v. Draft Debate

BOSTON, Oct. 4 - How do you like your genomes: finished or draft?

 

In a talk here today at the Genome Sequencing and Analysis Conference, Eric Green of the National Human Genome Research Institute worked through one of the sequencing community's favorite debates. Green's research group, knee-deep in a study aimed at finally answering that question, plans to put together an abstract in time for the February Marco Island meeting, Green told GenomeWeb after his talk. Final results may come "within the next six to 12 months."

 

The study involves gathering datasets from a "pristinely finished" genome, a draft sequence, and one that falls between those extremes, Green said. The comparisons may yield definitive information on what standard is most efficient and cost-effective while being most useful to other scientists.

 

"The most important thing is that we're trying to do this systematically," he added.

 

At this point, Green will only venture a guess at the outcome of the debate. "My gut instinct is that there's no way we're going to finish every genome to the extent that we finish human," he said.

 

The study results will stand to have quite an impact on the sequencing community. Green pointed out in his talk that BAC libraries, a possible first step toward sequencing, are being prepared for many organisms that aren't on a priority genome list yet, such as rabbit, opossum, platypus, and bat.

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