The National Human Genome Research Institute began as the National Center for Human Genome Research (NCHGR), which was established in 1989 to carry out the role of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the International Human Genome Project (HGP). The HGP was developed in collaboration with the United States Department of Energy and begun in 1990 to map the human genome. In 1993, NCHGR expanded its role on the NIH campus by establishing the Division of Intramural Research to apply genome technologies to the study of specific diseases. In 1996, the Center for Inherited Disease Research (CIDR) was also established (co-funded by eight NIH institutes and centers) to study the genetic components of complex disorders.
In 1997 the United States Department of Health and Human Services renamed NCHGR the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), officially elevating it to the status of research institute - one of 27 institutes and centers that make up the NIH.
With the human genome sequence complete since April 2003, scientists around the world have access to a database that greatly facilitates and accelerates the pace of biomedical research. The history of the HGP, the history of genomics, and the history of NHGRI, are inextricably intertwined.
Top of page
Last Reviewed: December 25, 2012