01 January 2011

Michigan: Genetics of Jewish populations, Jan. 9

Genetic studies of the relationships among Jewish populations is the focus of the next meeting of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Michigan, on Sunday, January 9.

Noah Rosenberg of the University of Michigan - Associate Professor of Human Genetics, Biostatistics, and Ecology & Evolutionary Biology - is the speaker. The program begins at 11am at the Holocaust Memorial Center, 28123 Orchard Lake Road, Farmington Hills.

He will examine recent developments in the field of Jewish population genetics, with a focus on studies conducted in an ongoing partnership between our laboratory at the University of Michigan with scientists at Tel Aviv University and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Rosenberg earned a BA in mathematics (Rice University), an MS in mathematics and a PhD in biological sciences (both Stanford University), and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the molecular and computational biology group at the University of Southern California.
Since the early days of the field of human genetics, it has been recognized that genetic tools can provide insight into the nature of the relationships between different Jewish communities.  To what extent do different Jewish populations share a common genetic ancestry?  How does the level of genetic similarity of Jewish populations with each other compare to that between Jewish populations and their non-Jewish historical neighbors?

Now that studies of the human genome have dramatically enhanced our ability to understand patterns of human genetic variation and their history, it is becoming increasingly possible to investigate relationships among Jewish populations, with finer and finer resolution.

His research focuses on mathematical and statistical problems and evolutionary biology and human genetics, with a focus on the analysis of human genetic variation.  He is the author of some 60 peer-reviewed scientific publications, which have appeared in such journals as Bioinformatics, EvolutionGenetics, Nature, Science, and Theoretical Population Biology

Fee: JGSMI members, free; others, $5.

For more information and directions, click the JGSMI website.

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