The Mystery Genes Keeping You Alive
Nobody knows what around a fifth of your genes actually do
One could be forgiven for a little genetic déjà vu.
Launched in 1990, the Human Genome Project unveiled its first readout of the human DNA sequence with great fanfare in 2000. The human genome was declared essentially complete in 2003—but it took nearly 20 more years before the final, complete version was released.
This did not mark the end of humankind’s genetic puzzle, however. A new study has mapped the yawning gap between reading our genes and understanding them. Vast parts of the genome—areas the study authors have nicknamed the “Unknome”—are made of genes whose function we still don’t know.
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