The real cost of J. C. Venter's genome

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Sandra Porter

A few weeks ago, I did some "back-of-the-envelope" calculations to explain to a reader why genome sequencing costs so much.

I estimated that, if JCV's genome were sequenced at the cost advertised by university core laboratories, his genome would cost about $128 million.

That was an estimate, of course. But what did it really cost?

Genome Technology asked J. Craig himself. In the October 2007 issue of GT, JCV estimates that the cost from the first Celera human genome project (guess who?) was about $100 million and that the cost of his most recent genome project was at least $70 million.

Interestingly, J. Craig also said that his will probably be the last human genome to be sequenced by capillary electrophoresis and Sanger dideoxy sequencing because of the cost.

Next generation sequencing, here we come!