Genome sequencing projects…it’s all about the numbers


So there is this project called Genome 10K. They aim to sequence the genomes of — wait for it — 10,000 vertebrate species. Impressive projects like this need impressive names, which increasingly means inserting [big number of your choice] into the project name. Don’t believe me? Well let's see what other big 'omics' sequencing projects are out there?

I wonder if there has been any confusion between the '1000 Genomes' and 1001 Genomes' projects, or the '100,000 Genomes Project' and '100K Pathogen Genome Project' ("these human genomes seem awfully small").

So where do we go after 100,000? A million of course. Although there isn’t a dedicated collaborative project for this, there is already an aim by the company Complete Genomics to sequence a million human genomes by (the end of?) 2014

So if you want to make a big splash in genomics, then you ideally need to be thinking of at least a '10M' project to begin with. Otherwise, I guess you need to look for some other 'novelty' numbers like the '959 nematode genomes' project. How about the '42 Genomes Project — dedicated to finding the ultimate answer to life, the universe, and everything.



  1. 2014-10-27: now includes mention of 1KP project
  2. 2014-10-28: now includes mention of 100,000 genomes project (h/t @NazeemaFatima), which also gave me a reason to reorganize a lot of the information in this post.
  3. 2014-10-30: added 3K RGP project