Tucked away among hundreds of chickens on the campus of Michigan State University is one of the biggest contributors to genetic science. Her name is 256 and she supplied samples for the first sequenced chicken DNA.
Jerry Dodgson, MSU Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, is part of a nationwide team of scientists that helped crack the code. Dodgson says when research began they could only access one gene at a time and now they have 20,000 to 25,000 genes to look at.
DNA has been mapped in a fruit fly, a human, and even a rat, but the chicken is the most recent subject added to the list. The information is still in first draft and it could be awhile before it is able to be applied. But once the DNA is ready, it will aid other fowl and humans, too.
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