​DNA mapping for cancer patients

By BBC News December 10,2012

Up to 100,000 patients with cancer and rare diseases in England are to have their entire genetic code sequenced.

The Prime Minister will announce £100m has been set aside for the project over the next three to five years.

The aim is to give doctors a better understanding of patients' genetic make-up, condition and treatment needs, and help develop new cancer treatments.

One human genome contains three billion base pairs - the building blocks of DNA.

Sequencing the code produces a huge amount of data. Although the price is falling fast, it currently costs £5,000 to £10,000 - which explains why no country in the world has embarked on mass DNA mapping on this scale.

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