The Chicago Tribune reports: “Two competing teams of scientists have released the first spectacular set of discoveries from the new catalog of the human genome, findings that promise to begin reshaping our view of who we are and where we came from. We are genetically less complex than anyone dreamed -- the entire set of genetic instructions for making a human is not much larger than that for a fruit fly or a roundworm. We are more closely related to other organisms than anyone knew and even received some genes directly from bacteria, providing essential biological machinery that still ticks within us.
Scientists are looking both into the past and into the future, finding a family tree that goes back 500 million years, as well as discovering genes that predict how long a person is likely to live, what he or she may die from, and how that fate may be changed. ‘This is for the first time having in front of us the human book of life and realizing that it's actually three books,’ said Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Research Center and mastermind of an international consortium of public investigators that is one of two major groups to publish its findings this week. ‘It's a history book that tells us about where we came from,...It's a shop manual that contains within it a list of the parts that we're made of. And it's a textbook of medicine that contains within it clues to the causes of diabetes, heart disease, cancer and a variety of other disorders that we we only at the moment barely glimpse…”


I edited out the "------" at the bottom of this post.

[This message has been edited by Daryl Fawcett (edited May 14, 2001).]