PM hopes to make Britain 'world leader in genetics'

Prime Minister David Cameron hopes Britain will become a world leader in genetic research after unveiling a "landmark" £300 million project which will map 100,000 complete DNA code sequences.

The study, which will be completed in 2017, aims to lead the way in research on cancer and rare diseases and could be pivotal to the development of future personalised treatments, which has the potential to revolutionise medicine.

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Genome project could help find cure for blindness

The government-backed genome project could help find a cure for a deadly eye disease which is the leading cause of blindness in children.

Professor Graeme Black, strategic director at the Manchester Centre for Genomic Medicine, said it was a "very, very exciting development" in the search for a possible treatment for the condition known as retinitis pigmentosa or RP.

At the moment around 200 genes relating to the illness have been identified which if mutated can cause sight loss, but there are thought to be more than 500.

RP Fighting Blindness chief executive David Head said: "For people faced with blindness as a result of inherited retinal dystrophies, this is really important."

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