Do you have your mother's dimples? Or your father's hairline? What is it about us that makes us us? And how much of it actually sets us apart from not only other human beings but from every other living thing on Earth?

Genome: Unlocking Life's Code begins to unravel the mystery behind the complete set of instructions needed for every living thing on Earth to grow and function: the genome. It took nearly a decade, three billion dollars, and thousands of scientists to sequence the human genome in 2003. And thanks to the pioneering work of the Human Genome Project, we are starting to know so much more about ourselves, and our world.

Your genome is a roadmap that can help you trace your ancestral past, and take charge of your future health. Discover how our newfound ability to identify thousands of genes that contribute to disease has helped open the way to more personalized healthcare. Weigh in on the legal and ethical issues surrounding cutting-edge genomic research and its implications on society.

See yourself in a new way: as an individual, as a member of a family, and as part of the diversity of life on Earth.

Eric D. Green, M.D., Ph.D.
From the Human Genome Project to
Precision Medicine: A Journey to Advance Human Health

National Human Genome Research Institute National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, Maryland, USA

Join Dr. Eric Green, to discuss how advancements in genomics, DNA sequencing technologies and emerging clinical applications of genomics are ushering in the era of precision medicine.

Starting with the launch of the Human Genome Project in 1990, the past quarter-century has brought spectacular achievements in genomics that dramatically empower the study of human biology and disease. The human genomics enterprise is now in the midst of an important transition, as the growing foundation of genomic knowledge is being used by researchers and clinicians to tackle increasingly complex problems in biomedicine. Of particular prominence is the use of revolutionary new DNA sequencing technologies for generating prodigious amounts of DNA sequence data to elucidate the complexities of genome structure, function, and evolution, as well as to unravel the genomic bases of rare and common diseases. Meanwhile, impactful clinical applications of genomics are now emerging. Together, these developments are ushering in the era of precision medicine.

PLUS! Special tour of Genome: Unlocking Life’s Code


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Eric D. Green
National Human Genome Research Institute

Eric D. Green, M.D., Ph.D. is the Director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a position he has held since late 2009. Previously, he served as the NHGRI Scientific Director, Chief of the NHGRI Genome Technology Branch, and Director of the NIH Intramural Sequencing Center.

Dr. Green received his B.S. degree in Bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1981, and his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Washington University in 1987. During residency training in clinical pathology (laboratory medicine), he worked in the laboratory of Dr. Maynard Olson, where he launched his career in genomics research. While directing an independent research program for almost two decades, Dr. Green was at the forefront of efforts to map, sequence, and understand eukaryotic genomes. His work included significant, start-to-finish involvement in the Human Genome Project. These efforts eventually blossomed into a highly productive program in comparative genomics that provided important insights about genome structure, function, and evolution. His laboratory also identified and characterized several human disease genes, including those implicated in certain forms of hereditary deafness, vascular disease, and inherited peripheral neuropathy.

As Director of NHGRI, Dr. Green is responsible for providing overall leadership of the Institute’s research portfolio and other initiatives. In 2011, Dr. Green led NHGRI to the completion of a strategic planning process that yielded a new vision for the future of genomics research, entitled Charting a course for genomic medicine from base pairs to bedside (Nature 470:204-213, 2011). Since that time, he has led the Institute in broadening its research mission; this has included designing and launching a number of major programs to accelerate the application of genomics to medical care. Beyond NHGRI-specific programs, Dr. Green has also played an instrumental leadership role in the development of several high-profile efforts relevant to genomics, including the Smithsonian-NHGRI exhibition Genome: Unlocking Life’s Code, the NIH Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) program, the NIH Genomic Data Sharing Policy, and the U.S. Precision Medicine Initiative.