Essay 2002 the human genome illustrates both continuity and change

The model of Big Few fails when including overlooked geographical regions such as India. The study which examined fifty-eight genetic markers found that Indian populations owe their ancestral lineages to Africa, Central Asia, Europe, and southern China. The sampled indigenous populations of the HGDP are assumed to be "pure"; the law professor Roberts claims that "their unusual purity is all the more reason they cannot stand in for all the other populations of the world that marked by intermixture from migration, commerce, and conquest.

King and Motulsky, in a Science article, state that "While the computer-generated findings from all of these studies offer greater insight into the genetic unity and diversity of the human species, as well as its ancient migratory history, none support dividing the species into discrete, genetically determined racial categories". Bamshad, in paper published in Nature , asserts that a more accurate study of human genetic variation would use an objective sampling method, which would choose populations randomly and systematically across the world, including those populations which are characterized by historical intermingling, instead of cherry-picking population samples which fit a priori concepts of racial classification.

Roberts states that "if research collected DNA samples continuously from region to region throughout the world, they would find it impossible to infer neat boundaries between large geographical groups. Anthropologists such as C.

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Loring Brace , [55] philosophers Jonathan Kaplan and Rasmus Winther, [56] [56] [57] [58] and geneticist Joseph Graves , [59] have argued that while it is certainly possible to find biological and genetic variation that corresponds roughly to the groupings normally defined as "continental races", this is true for almost all geographically distinct populations. The cluster structure of the genetic data is therefore dependent on the initial hypotheses of the researcher and the populations sampled. When one samples continental groups the clusters become continental; if one had chosen other sampling patterns the clustering would be different.

Weiss and Fullerton have noted that if one sampled only Icelanders, Mayans and Maoris, three distinct clusters would form and all other populations could be described as being clinally composed of admixtures of Maori, Icelandic and Mayan genetic materials. They conclude that while racial groups are characterized by different allele frequencies, this does not mean that racial classification is a natural taxonomy of the human species, because multiple other genetic patterns can be found in human populations that cross-cut racial distinctions.

Moreover, the genomic data under-determines whether one wishes to see subdivisions i.

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Under Kaplan and Winther's view, racial groupings are objective social constructions see Mills [61] that have conventional biological reality only insofar as the categories are chosen and constructed for pragmatic scientific reasons. Commercial ancestry testing companies, who use genetic clustering data, have been also heavily criticized. Limitations of genetic clustering are intensified when inferred population structure is applied to individual ancestry.

The type of statistical analysis conducted by scientists translates poorly into individual ancestry because they are looking at difference in frequencies, not absolute differences between groups. Commercial genetic genealogy companies are guilty of what Pillar Ossorio calls the "tendency to transform statistical claims into categorical ones". Many commercial companies use data from the International HapMap Project HapMap 's initial phrase, where population samples were collected from four ethnic groups in the world: Han Chinese, Japanese, Yoruba Nigerian, and Utah residents of Northern European ancestry.

If a person has ancestry from a region where the computer program does not have samples, it will compensate with the closest sample that may have nothing to do with the customer's actual ancestry: "Consider a genetic ancestry testing performed on an individual we will call Joe, whose eight great-grandparents were from southern Europe.

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The HapMap populations are used as references for testing Joe's genetic ancestry. The HapMap's European samples consist of "northern" Europeans. In regions of Joe's genome that vary between northern and southern Europe such regions might include the lactase gene , the genetic ancestry test is using the HapMap reference population is likely to incorrectly assign the ancestry of that portion of the genome to a non-European population because that genomic region will appear to be more similar to the HapMap's Yoruba or Han Chinese samples than to Northern European samples.

Researchers have never sampled the world's populations in a systematic and random fashion. Roberts argues against the use of broad geographical or continental groupings: "molecular geneticists routinely refer to African ancestry as if everyone on the continent is more similar to each other than they are to people of other continents, who may be closer both geographically and genetically.

Populations came to be seen as "bounded units amenable to scientific sampling, analysis, and classification". From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. See also: Race and genetics. Gene cluster Genetic admixture Haplogroup Human genetic variation Population groups in biomedicine Y-chromosome haplogroups in populations of the world.

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The Human Genome Project

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Nature Reviews Genetics. The History and Geography of Human Genes. Princeton: Princeton University Press. An empirical evaluation of some genetic methods for identifying the number of gene pools and their degree of connectivity".

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Lessons from the Human Genome Project

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Lamarckism - Wikipedia

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