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The Genographic Project

The National Geographic Society, IBM, geneticist Spencer Wells, and the Waitt Family Foundation have launched the Genographic Project, a five-year effort to understand the human journey—where we came from and how we got to where we live today. This unprecedented effort will map humanity's genetic journey through the ages.

The fossil record fixes human origins in Africa, but little is known about the great journey that took Homo sapiens to the far reaches of the Earth. How did we, each of us, end up where we are? Why do we appear in such a wide array of different colors and features? Such questions are even more amazing in light of genetic evidence that we are all related—descended from a common African ancestor who lived only 60,000 years ago.

Though eons have passed, the full story remains clearly written in our genes—if only we can read it. With your help, we can. If you choose to participate and add your data to the global research database, you'll help to delineate our common genetic tree, giving detailed shape to its many twigs and branches. Together we can tell the ancient story of our shared human journey. The Genographic Project

What a pity that the participation kit 'costs U.S. $99.95 (plus shipping and handling and tax if applicable)' — per person. Not many people are going to be taking this up … Ironic, given that the 'Genographic Project will work with the relevant authorities to achieve the broadest level of public participation possible' (this in the face of restrictions imposed by some governments, eg China, on ' the export of genetic material').

via EurekAlert!

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