New Effort Underway to Gather Genomic Information from People with African Ancestry

MSM Senior Vice President of Research Dr. Rick Kittles explains that only two percent of current research is conducted with genetic material from Black people.

Scientists want to create the world’s largest database of genomic information from people with African ancestry. Right now, researchers say less than two percent of genetic material studied today comes from Black people. This project hopes to change that by collecting DNA from half a million people of African descent. The newly formed Diaspora Human Genomics Institute at Meharry Medical College in Nashville will be in charge of the genetic information, and Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the country have signed up to help.

Dr. Rick Kittles is the Senior Vice President of Research at Morehouse School of Medicine. He spoke with Scripps News about the new initiative and the disparities it aims to address.

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