Neanderthal genome to be unveiled





The entire genome of a 38,000-year-old Neanderthal has been sequenced by a team of scientists in Germany. The group is already extracting DNA from other ancient Neanderthal bones and hopes that the genomes will allow an unprecedented comparison between modern humans and their closest evolutionary relative.

The three-year project, which cost about 5 million euros (US$6.4 million), was carried out at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig. "We are working like crazy at the moment," says project leader Svante Pääbo, adding that his Max Planck colleague, computational biologist Richard Green, is coordinating the analysis of the genome's 3 billion base pairs.



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