Evening Lectures in Genomics: Ron Crystal, Weill Cornell Medical College
Thursday, March 13, 2014 from 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM (EDT)
New York, NY
San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Title:Genomics of Qataris: Relevance to Human Migration and Implications for Public Health
Abstract: The Qatari population, residing in a peninsula on the northeast coast of the Arabian Peninsula, is comprised of approximately 300,000 individuals out of a population of 1.8 million residing in Qatar. Qatar sits at the crossroads of human evolution out of Africa, with human habituation dating over 50,000 years. The current Qataris are descendants of nomadic tribes and participants in regional sea-based commerce, with European, Persian and Southern African influences. Consistent with this history, we have categorized the Qatari population into 3 distinct genetic groups: Bedouin (Q1), Persian-South Asian (Q2) and African (Q3). Together with Juan Rodriguez-Flores and Jason Mezey at Weill Cornell, to gain further insight into the genetic variation of the Qatari population and their risk for inherited disorders, we have carried out massive parallel whole genome sequencing in 100 Qatari genomes and exome sequencing of 1,000 Qatari genomes. By leveraging representation of the Q1, Q2 and Q3 genetic subpopulations in the sample, the data has led to insights into human migration out of Africa, and an overview of Mendelian polymorphisms in a sample that represents approximately 0.3% of the entire Qatari population. Together these data provide an overview of the evolution of the Qatari population and how genetic variation can differentially influence subpopulations exposed to the same environment.