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Research Team led by JCVI Scientists Uncover More Complexity and Detail in Southern African Genomic Diversity
Date:3/14/2013

ROCKVILLE, Md., March 14, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A team of international researchers led by scientists from the J. Craig Venter Institute (JCVI) has published a study detailing the degree of genomic diversity of several southern Africa populations. These populations are some of the oldest human lineages but are also some of the most diverse because of the influx of outside non-African populations. The team, led by JCVI's Vanessa Hayes , Ph.D., published their study in March 14 edition of the open access journal PloS Genetics.

Hayes and her team at JCVI have long been studying the Khoesan people in southern Africa, a group characterized by two subsets the Khoe and the San who are unique in their foraging nature and click-using language; the Southern Bantu, a broad term used to describe ancestral non-clicking languages spoken within the boarders of South Africa, Botswana and Mozambique; the self-identified "Coloured" population of South Africa, who emerged from European colonization and East Indian slave trade in the 1600's; and the Baster population of Namibia, a population although sharing an ancestral heritage with the Coloured self-identified as independent migrating into then southwest Africa in the 1800's.

For this research study the team looked at 103 individuals within the above described populations, all were extensively interviewed regarding their language, culture and personal histories. Using gender-specific analysis and one million genetic markers, the team was able to better understand the specific genetic lineages that have shaped these modern populations.

While all populations carried significant Khoesan contributions, the data defines independent pre
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SOURCE J. Craig Venter Institute
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