The Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP announced earlier this month the government’s aspiration to map five million genomes in the UK over the next five years.
The West Suffolk MP, who was appointed Secretary of State for Health and Social Care in July, said: “I’m proud to announce we are expanding our 100,000 Genomes Project so that one million whole genomes will now be sequenced by the NHS and the UK Biobank.
“I’m incredibly excited about the potential for this type of technology to improve the diagnosis and treatment for patients to help people live longer, healthier lives.”
The 100,000 Genomes Project has shown what is possible and the NHS Genomic Medicine Service will expand on this, using the newly-established national testing network, to sequence 500,000 genomes in the next five years.
Cambridge University Hospitals, as one of 7 national genomic laboratory hubs in the network, will play a key part in this.
Another 500,000 genomes will be sequenced by medical research project UK Biobank.
The long-term aim is to sequence five million genomes.