Friday, August 31, 2007

Off the Beaten Path: An Interview with Spencer Wells

From PLoS:
Jane Gitschier
Citation: Gitschier J (2007) Off the Beaten Path: An Interview with Spencer Wells. PLoS Genet 3(3): e44 doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.0030044

"Spencer Wells has this geneticist's dream job. He transits the globe, collecting DNA samples, building collaborations, and orchestrating what may be the most extensive and fascinating project on human origins yet, sponsored by one of the most respected institutions in the US—The National Geographic Society. There, Wells holds the oxymoronically named post of “Explorer-in-Residence” and runs the Genographic Project (, whose mission is to collect and genotype the Y and mitochondrial chromosomes from people the world over in order to track male and female lineages, respectively, and thereby infer migratory patterns throughout human history.

I was curious to learn how someone so young (he started working with National Geographic when he was only 33) could plunge into a project of this magnitude. The answer is that Wells is a man of many facets, vision, and energy. And he has a knack for creating the opportunity."

Continued here: