NET NEWS: HapMap Lifts Data Restrictions

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Science  24 Dec 2004:
Vol. 306, Issue 5705, pp. 2167
DOI: 10.1126/science.306.5705.2167b

A global project to map human genetic variation has fully opened its data to the public. The International HapMap Consortium is sequencing the DNA of 270 people from four populations to map common patterns of mutations (Science, 21 November 2003, p. 1305). Because of concerns that someone might try to patent the data, the project had required users downloading results on individuals to sign a nonexclusive license agreement. But enough human variation information is now publicly available that patenting is no longer a worry, organizers say. The removal of restrictions now means other genome databases, such as Ensembl, can fold HapMap findings into their sites.

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