News & CommentGenetics

Whose Genome Is It, Anyway?

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Science  27 Sep 1996:
Vol. 273, Issue 5283, pp. 1788-1789
DOI: 10.1126/science.273.5283.1788


The Human Genome Project has issued guidelines to ensure that sequencing is done on DNA from diverse sources who have given informed consent and are anonymous. Most current sources don't meet those criteria, however. The DNA of major clone libraries now being fed into high-volume robotized labs appears to come primarily from four subjects, two of whommay not have been informed in advance that their genome would become part of a public database. Worse, not all the donors appear to be anonymous: Sequencers in U.S. labs say theyknow the names of two of them, because they are colleagues.