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CALS Research Helps Map DNA
CALS researchers are part of an international collaboration to build the most detailed map of human genetic variation, which could provide a much more comprehensive understanding of the role of inherited DNA variation in human history, evolution, and disease, and the best methods to sequence DNA. The 1,000 Genomes Project, a public-private consortium, is using next-generation technology to sequence more than 2,500 individual human genomes from 27 populations worldwide by 2012.
Cornell researchers, including Andrew Clark, the Jacob Gould Schurman Professor of Population Genetics, and Alon Keinan, assistant professor of biological statistics and computational biology, were involved in designing the global sampling of human populations and analyzing the vast amount of genetic data to identify errors and perform population genetics analyses.
Meanwhile, Professor Charles Aquadro in the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, hopes to use the latest genetic mapping technology to reveal the deep genetic ancestry of 200 randomly chosen Cornell undergraduates, who swabbed their cheeks and submitted DNA samples. Aquadro has partnered with several others across campus and with National Geographic to explore the scientific, social, legal, and ethical implications of genetic testing as part of the new Cornell Genetic Ancestry Program.