05 November 2009

Out of Africa: Dr. Spencer Wells in San Diego, Nov. 11

National Geographic's Explorer-in-Residence Dr. Spencer Wells will speak at the San Diego Natural History Museum, on Wednesday, November 11.

The program begins at 6.30pm in the Charmaine and Maurice Kaplan Theater. The related exhibit is at the Museum of Man.

"Deep Ancestry: Inside the Genographic Project" tackles the universal questions of who are we and where we come from. We look different, are we all related? Wherever we live, we all share a common birthplace: Africa, says Wells. "We are all effectively cousins separated by no more than 200 generations."

He has dedicated much of his career to studying humankind's family tree and closing the gaps in our knowledge of human migration. Wells applied new scientific techniques to dig deeper into the details of our ancient past. Following strict ethical protocols, regional teams of Genographic scientists are collaborating with indigenous and traditional people worldwide to analyze their DNA. Because of their relative isolation, they retain the ancestral context in which their genetic diversity arose.
The Museum of Man exhibit takes visitors along the migration map from 60,000 years ago and traces the routes of female and male descendants of the earliest African hominids. Their paths are found in our own DNA.

For more information, call the Museum of Man, 619-239-2001 or send an email.

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