Faroe Islands aim to sequence genes of entire country

faroe islands
Gásadalur, Faroe Islands. Image: Erik Christensen

The following is an edited excerpt.

The 18 Faroe Islands lie in a tight cluster between Iceland and Scotland and are just about the last place in the world you might imagine for a genome revolution. Like other remote islands, a limited gene pool has led to a greater prevalence of certain diseases.

But last year, the Health Ministry of the Faroe Islands announced plans to perform whole genome sequencing on every citizen who wants it. During the pilot phase over the next year or so, they aim to sequence 1,000 individuals, focusing on those with CTD, along with other conditions, such as schizophrenia, cystic fibrosis and diabetes.

Read the full story here: Faroe Islands Aim to Sequence Genes of Entire Country


Additional Resources:

  • NIH: DNA Sequencing Costs
    Researchers hope that the Faroe Island work may help drive down the cost of whole genome sequencing. This website from the National Institutes of Health includes charts of how the cost has dropped over the past decade.
  • What happened when I had my genome sequenced,” Guardian
    Read a firsthand account of one journalist’s experience of getting her whole genome sequenced.
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