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Wanted: A million genomes for precision medicine

Eric Dishman
Eric Dishman, director of the All of Us Research Program at the National Institutes of Health, meets the press at the University of Washington. (GeekWire Photo / Alan Boyle)

Eric Dishman is a living, breathing advertisement for the ambitious experiment he’s in charge of, the National Institutes of Health’s “All of Us” drive to collect and analyze the genomes of a million Americans.

If it weren’t for the fact that he had his genome sequenced seven years ago, he probably would not be living and breathing.

Back then, he was struggling with a rare form of kidney cancer that had put him through decades’ worth of chemotherapy, radiation and misery. And the end was near.

“I was probably going to die, and I was literally on my last business trip to both Boston and San Diego, where a lot of the early genomics work was being done,” Dishman, a former Intel executive, recalled today during a sit-down with journalists at the University of Washington.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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