December 21, 2011
Mongolian Genome Sequenced By Chinese Researchers
Researchers, led by Zhou Huanmin, earlier this week claimed that they have finalized sequencing for the genome of a direct descendant of Genghis Khan, Xinhua News Agency is reporting.
Huanmin, the project leader and head of the biological research lab at the Inner Mongolia Agricultural University, said Sunday that this was the first individual genome sequencing of a Mongolian.
The scientists, from Inner Mongolia Agricultural University (IMAU), and Inner Mongolia University for the Nationalities (IMUN) and Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI), claim this research will promote better understanding of the evolutionary process and migration of Mongolians and their ancestors from Africa to Asia and may also lay an important genomic foundation for further development of human genetic research.
Modern Mongolians are a central Asian ethnic group mostly inhabited in Mongolia, Inner Mongolia in China and Buryatia in Russia numbering nearly ten millions ethnic Mongol people.
Tracing back to the 13th and 14th Century, the “Mongol Empire” was commonly referred as the “largest contiguous empire” in the world history, and it has stretched its territory from the Yellow Sea in eastern Asia to the borders of eastern Europe under the leadership of Genghis Khan and his descendants.
“With the completion of the first Mongolian genome, we believe that the genomics study of Mongolian will help us to explore the distinctive features of Mongolian and the genetic differences with other ethnic groups, including the medical genetics and incidence of genetic diseases,” stated by Ye Yin, Director of Research and Cooperation Division at BGI.
“We are currently planning to sequence and analyze more Mongolian samples, aiming to build genetic database of Mongolian for supporting research of Mongolian in medicine, migration, evolution, among others.” said Professor Zhou, “We are also seeking more participants and helpful advices for the project to promote the research findings for bringing benefits to human.” he added.
On the Net:
- Inner Mongolia Agricultural University
- Inner Mongolia University for the Nationalities (IMUN)
- Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI)