wis logo

Before the completion of the human genome project ...


The Human Genome Sequencing Consortium published an update on the whole genome sequence of Homo Sapiens in 2004 and concluded that there are between 20,000 and 25,000 structural genes. This is lower than the lowest estimate of the gene sweepstake given as 27,462 and is lower than the 2001 estimated number of 35,000 genes when the first draft sequence of the human genome was published. (Reference: Human Genome Sequencing Consortium, I. (2004). "Finishing the euchromatic sequence of the human genome." Nature 431(7011): 931-945.)

UPDATE: 'The Human Genome 2012: 18,451 RNA genes, 11,224 pseudogenes, 20,687 protein coding genes, an average of 6.3 splice variants per gene, gene sequences cover 2.94% of the genome, exon sequences cover 1.22% of the genome' (ENCODE, Nature.com)

Once upon a time ... before the completion of the human genome project:

Gene Sweepstake Once you know what a gene is, bet your money on it!     

The figure shows the status of bets as of August 2002.

The Gene Sweepstake was run between 2000 and 2003. The rules were: It costs $1 to make a bet in 2000, $5 in 2001 and $20 in 2002. Bets are for one number. Closest number wins, and in case of ties, the pot is split. Bets are based on the following definition: a gene is a set of connected transcripts. A transcript is a set of exons via transcription followed (optionally) by pre-mRNA splicing. Two transcripts are connected if they share at least part of one exon in the genomic coordinates. At least one transcript must be expressed outside of the nucleus and one transcript must encode a protein. 

Back to genes

Copyright  © 2000-2012 Lukas K. Buehler