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Writing A Landmark Sequel To ‘The Book Of Life’

May 2, 2012

Scientists are announcing the roadmap, policies and procedures for an ambitious international project that aims to compile a landmark sequel to “The Book of Life.”
The follow-up to the Human Genome Project, which decoded all of the genes that make up humans, involves identifying and profiling all of the proteins produced by the thousands of genes bundled together in all of the human chromosomes. Called the Chromosome-Centric Human Proteome Project (C-HPP), it is the topic of an article in ACS’ Journal of Proteome Research.

William Hancock, Young-Ki Paik and colleagues explain that C-HPP’s goal is the next logical step after the 2001 deciphering of the human genome – a step critical for applying that genetic knowledge in medicine. Genes contain instructions for making proteins, the biological workhorses that influence every aspect of health and disease. Hancock, Paik and colleagues formed C-HPP, an international group of 20 scientific teams, to coordinate efforts to decode this full complement of human, chromosome-encoded proteins, termed the “proteome.”

C-HPP’s first target will be thousands of “missing” proteins – proteins that should exist, based on the instructions in genes and other genetic evidence, but remain undiscovered. C-HPP will also help determine what these proteins do in health and disease. The article notes that the Journal of Proteome Research and its publisher, the American Chemical Society, will support C-HPP by publishing results of this work and stimulating recruitment of additional research teams.

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