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Largest database of human genes assembled

Largest database of human genes assembled

Posting in Science

New merger puts the genes behind embryonic development, stem cell research, regenerative medicine, human disease and more all in one place.

Today, two companies merged. This is not a big deal really - companies merge all the time. This time, BioTime acquired XenneX Inc. But what that really means is the creation of the world's largest database of human genes ever.

The database is really three databases that are now one. "This platform will include GeneCards®: the leading human gene database; the LifeMap™ database of embryonic development, stem cell research and regenerative medicine; and MalaCards, the human disease database," the press release explains.

Having all that information in one, easy to search database, can really only be a good thing. “We believe that centralized online databases of biological knowledge will become indispensable tools for research in the field of regenerative medicine,” Michael D. West, BioTime’s CEO, said in a written statement when the merger agreement was first announced.

Once the data is all together, researchers will be able to generate cells that are applicable in the laboratory setting. "Because the complexity of human development is mirrored by the complexity of cell types arising from [human embryonic stem cells] and [induce pluripotent stem] cells, there is a great need for a database to aid researchers in selecting the progenitor cell lines that are most likely to develop into tissues usable in cell replacement therapies," the release explains.

Via: Businesswire

Image: Nissim Benvenisty

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Rose Eveleth

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor Rose Eveleth is a freelance writer, producer and designer based in Brooklyn, New York. Her work has appeared in Scientific American, OnEarth, Discover, New York Times, Story Collider and Radiolab. She holds degrees from the University of California, San Diego and New York University. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure