NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) - Applied Biosystems said today that it has signed a multi-year agreement to supply laboratory research equipment and services to the Genographic Project, a research partnership between the National Geographic Society and IBM to map the history of human migration.
ABI said in a statement that its technology will be used to "aid in the generation of one of the world's largest databases of information about the sources of humankind's diversity."
Specifically, ABI said that it will supply DNA analysis technology and related services to each of the ten participating global research centers involved in the Genographic Project. The DNA analysis technology will include the 3100 and 3130xl Genetic Analyzers; GeneAmp PCR System 9700; 7300 Real-Time PCR System; 7900HT Fast Real-Time PCR System; 7900HT Fast Real-Time PCR System; and GeneMapper ID Software, ABI said.
Researchers at the centers will use Applied Biosystems technology to analyze DNA samples from more than 100,000 people from indigenous and traditional populations around the globe to identify and analyze key genetic markers that have remained relatively unaltered over hundreds of generations.
Member laboratories of the Genographic Project are located at the University of Pennsylvania in the US; Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Brazil; Institut Pasteur in France; Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Spain; American University of Beirut Medical Center in Lebanon; Russian Academy of Medical Sciences; La Trobe University and the Australian Centre for Ancient DNA at the University of Adelaide, both in Australia; Fudan University in China; Madurai Kamaraj University in India; National Health Laboratory Service in South Africa.
The North American Regional Center for the Genographic Project at UPenn will be the first to receive dedicated ABI equipment. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Members of the general public can take part in the project by purchasing a Genographic Project Public Participation Kit and submitting their own cheek swab sample, enabling them to track the overall progress of the project as well as learn their own migratory history. Data from the Genographic Project eventually will be made public in a form that does not reveal the identity of participants, ABI said.
Global field science for the project is supported by the Waitt Family Foundation.