The Genographic Project

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The Genographic Project Arthur Scott 2/15/2009   The Genographic Project The Genographic Project began in April of 2005 and headed by Dr. Spencer Wells, a distinguished population geneticist. The Genographic Project is seeking to chart new knowledge about the migratory history of the human species by using sophisticated laboratory and computer analysis of DNA contributed by hundreds of thousands of people from around the world (National Geographic, 2005). The Genographic Project will provide a map of the migratory patterns of the human species by studying the genetic signatures of early humans’ migrations by creating an open source research database of DNA samples. According to Lei, “The Genographic Project is billed as the world’s largest collection of DNA samples.” (Lei, 2005). One could say that this project is a way of making a giant family tree linking everyone together. According to Wells, “We are basically members of the same extended genetic family.” (Song, 2007). He believes the human species originated from Africa. After all the DNA samples have been analyzed, a clear migratory pattern will be shown and any missing information will be filled in. “The resulting data, we hope, will map world migratory patterns dating back some 150,000 years and will fill in the huge gaps in our knowledge of humankind’s migratory history.” ("About the Project" National Geographic, 2005). The Genographic Project is sponsored by many different organizations, groups, and individuals. The projects two main sponsors are IBM and the National Geographic Society with Dr. Wells serving as the director. IBM provided advanced technology and research assistance, while the National Geographic Society coordinates the efforts of this project by telling the story through their broad media outreach. “National Geographic will oversee the project, in

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