DNA sequencing at 40: past, present and future

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Abstract

This review commemorates the 40th anniversary of DNA sequencing, a period in which we have already witnessed multiple technological revolutions and a growth in scale from a few kilobases to the first human genome, and now to millions of human and a myriad of other genomes. DNA sequencing has been extensively and creatively repurposed, including as a ‘counter' for a vast range of molecular phenomena. We predict that in the long view of history, the impact of DNA sequencing will be on a par with that of the microscope.

The history and future potential of DNA sequencing, including the development of the underlying technologies and the expansion of its areas of application, are reviewed.

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