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Bioessays. 1996 Dec;18(12):973-81.

It's the genes! EST access to human genome content.

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Human Genetics Department, Merck & Co, West Point, PA 19480, USA.


ESTs or 'expressed sequence tags' are DNA sequences read from both ends of expressed gene fragments. The Merck-WashU EST Project and several other public EST projects are being performed to rapidly discover the complement of human genes, and make them easily accessible. These ESTs are widely used to discover novel members of gene families, to map genes to chromosomes as 'sequence-tagged sites' (STSs), and to identify mutations leading to heritable diseases. Informatic strategies for querying the EST databases are discussed, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the EST data. There is a compelling need to build on the informatic synthesis of human gene data, and to devise facile methods for determining gene functions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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