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Scientists Deflated By Boring Mouse Genome Results

"Scientists have admitted that they are 'deflated and disappointed' after four years' dull work to sequence the mouse genome came to boring fruition this week."

That's the lead from a recent article published on comedy web site Newbiscuit, a British version of The Onion (hat tip to BioWorld Perspectives). I really can't do it justice by paraphrasing, so here's a bit more:

British and Swiss geneticists-- unveiled the complicated and unintelligible results at a stilted press conference in Geneva on Tuesday. But it soon became apparent that none of the journalists present neither knew nor cared what the mouse genome was, nor what it was for. -- Dr Martin Jackson of Suffolk University: 'We thought that maybe the journalists were just particularly ignorant but it turns out that the general public doesn't give a toss about any of the weird DNA crap we've been doing either. We've just been wasting our lives.'
The article goes on to note that the mouse genome may allow scientists to "do nerdy stuff like curing Alzheimer's disease," but the general public has no interest in genome sequencing, except among those who think genomes are garden ornaments.

The actual sequence of the mouse genome, initially analyzed in 2002 and completed last May, generated significantly more fanfare. Interestingly though, while the original analysis concluded that mouse and human genomes were remarkably similar, the completed analysis proved that "there are more genetic differences between the two species than had been previously thought," according to the press release.

Maybe that's why biotech companies can MacGyver a cancer cure in mice with some duct tape, a little chewing gum and a paperclip â€" but it never seems to translate into efficacy in man--

Mouse photo by Flickr user be_khe, CC

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