Progress reported in 1,000 Genome Project

We mentioned the 1,000 Genome Project in reference to a Japanese man who joined the exclusive club of those who have had their genetic code completely sequenced. Now more news organizations are reporting on it because the project announced that 95 percent of all mankind's genetic variations have been found. Science News reports: "Despite its name, the project is an effort to catalog genetic variation in about 2,500 people. The information can be used to search for links between DNA variation and disease, and to study events in human prehistory that have left a genetic footprint." CBS News asks an important question: "Why does it matter?" The answer, CBS reports, is to find cures to diseases like Alzheimer's that have genetic components. The London Telegraph quotes Dr. Richard Durbin, group leader of the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and co-chair of the 1000 Genomes Project: "Already, just in the pilot phase, we've identified over 15 million genetic differences by looking at 179 people. Over half of those differences haven't been seen before."