News Focus

Controversial From the Start

Science  16 Feb 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5507, pp. 1182-1188
DOI: 10.1126/science.291.5507.1182a

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Summary

The deciphering of the human genome is being hailed as an achievement that will usher in a new era of biology and even alter our understanding of who we are. That's a far cry from how the idea was greeted when it was first proposed 15 years ago. "Absurd," "dangerous," and "impossible," scoffed numerous critics. And even if it could be done, who would want the complete sequence data anyway? It turns out a lot of people did. This once-ludicrous proposal became one of most hotly contested--and contentious--races in recent scientific history