The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is now soliciting proposals for funding to work toward the much-vaunted $1000 genome. Earlier this month (February 12), the NIH published a request for applications (RFA) for grants to develop low-cost genome-sequencing technologies.

Sequencing an entire mammalian-sized genome currently costs between $10 million and $50 million, but NIH hopes that this number can be reduced by four orders of magnitude over the next 10 years, with the ultimate goal being a $1000 genome. “I think the science is ready, that we can make progress,” said Jeff Schloss, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) technology development program. Schloss said that the idea for a $1000 genome has been around for a while—it was mentioned at the end of the Nature article describing the initial human genome sequencing project—but only recently was the planning process completed to make funding available.

NIH simultaneously...

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