Studying the same genes, for decades

In the News

Studying the same genes, for decades

September 21, 2018

Fifteen years later, the exact number of human genes is still being debated, with estimates ranging from 19,000 to 22,000.

Since 2003, researchers have noticed that scientists tend to study the same genes, over and over. And the genes that become popular aren't necessarily the most interesting ones, they say.  It may be decades before all the genes are studied. 

“I find that very depressing,” UW Medicine's Jay Shendure told The Atlantic. “It is stunning that we sit here 15 years after the Human Genome Project, and still know little to nothing about so many genes. In a world of finite resources, it does not make sense to invest equal effort in every gene. But it’s clear that something is amiss in the status quo of research allocation.”