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GEN News Highlights : Dec 7, 2006

Broad Institute Obtains $200M for Genomics Research

NHGRI grant will support large-scale DNA sequencing enhancements.

The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard received nearly $200 million from the NHGRI to support applications and enhancements of large-scale DNA sequencing for biomedicine. Over the next four years, the grant will fund a wide range of biomedical projects, including efforts to understand the genetic basis of cancer and other complex human diseases, dissect the regulation of the human genome based on comparisons with genomes of other mammals, and decode and analyze the genomes of key microbes.

The NHGRI grant will also support work aimed at developing and implementing DNA sequencing technologies that increase throughput and decrease cost.

In identifying genes responsible for human diseases, the grant will fund genomic sequencing under The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) Pilot Project. The grant will also support other genomic sequencing efforts to reveal the genetic variations that contribute to certain inherited diseases.

Other areas of research will be comparative studies that use evolutionary information to decipher the human genome and genomic studies to probe the genetic machinery of important microscopic organisms, including fungi, bacteria, and viruses.