Whole genome sequence based analysis of genetic variation and genome evolution


  • Prof Richard Durbin

    University of Cambridge

Project summary

Our ability to sequence genomes, exemplified by the human genome project, has enabled us to read the information in our DNA that underlies life. It has led to major medical advances and direct clinical applications in genetic disease and cancer. Continuing advances in technology create many opportunities in biomedical and evolutionary science, but require new computational methods to effectively use the data.

I will develop methods that will exploit our accumulated knowledge of genetic variation in the population, using advanced computing technology to allow them to scale to millions of genome sequences. As well as methods to efficiently measure genetic variation I will develop new statistical approaches to understanding the evolutionary relationship between genome sequences which will illuminate the genetic history of humans in Europe and Africa. I will address key questions about how modern humans are related to each other and our ancestors. I will also use these new methods to study speciation, natural selection and genetic adaptation, by studying the evolutionary radiation of vertebrates by looking at many hundreds of cichlid fish species in the African Great Lakes.