Our genes play a major role in making us who we are, but a lot of information about their function has been mysterious.
That's why an international team of researchers set out to figure out what the working parts of the human genome are, and what they mean for the human body as we know it.
The project is called the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE). When the Human Genome Project sequenced the human genome in 2003, it established the order of the 3 billion letters in the genome, which can be thought of as "the book of life."
ENCODE is about interpreting that - understanding which genetic variants affect biochemical function, and which ones are associated with disease.
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