"Analysis of ancient DNA""Analysis of ancient DNA"http://www.haverford.edu/calendar/details/186482KINSC Sharpless Auditorium2012-03-22T16:30:002012-03-22T18:00:00
March 22, 4:30PM
KINSC Sharpless Auditorium
The Department of Mathematics in conjunction with the Distinguished Visitors Program presents a talk by Nick Patterson, Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
Nick Patterson coauthored "A Draft Sequence of the Neandertal Genome", the paper in Science that won the 2010 Newcomb Cleveland Prize of the AAAS.
"Analysis of ancient DNA"
Until recently the only disciplines providing significant information about the pre-literate human past were archaeology and linguistics. Now genetics is making important contributions. We survey recent progress, which includes:
- The discovery that there was mating between modern and archaic humans in Eurasia, and in the ancestral populations of New Guinea and Australia.
- Settling a long standing issue as to whether agriculture in Europe originated primarily by cultural diffusion or by population movement.
- Improved understanding of the genetic history of India.
We will discuss some of the methods being used, and speculate on future progress.
Nick is a Cambridge-educated mathematician who moved from being a cryptanalyst at GCHQ in the UK and IDA CCR in Princeton NJ, to doing financial modeling for Rennaissance Technologies in NY, to doing computational genetics for the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard in Boston. Hence, his visit promises to be as exciting to economists (interested in finance) and biologists (interested in genetics) as mathematicians (interested in algebra, combinatorics and statistics). A New York Times interviewer wrote "The shelves of his office in Cambridge, Mass. carry arcane math titles, yet he can converse just as deeply about Buddhism or Thucydides, whose writings he has studied in ancient Greek. He is prone to outbursts of boisterous laughter."
Come meet him at the 4:15 pm tea in the KINSC rotunda.
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