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Department of Evolutionary Genetics

Director: Prof. Dr. Svante Pääbo

The Department of Evolutionary Genetics studies the genetic history of humans, apes and other organisms. We are interested in both the forces that affect the genome directly, such as mutation and recombination, and in the effects of selection and population history.

The department consists of two tenured faculty members: Svante Pääbo and Mark Stoneking; and one non-tenured member, Janet Kelso.

Genome Projects

The Department of Evolutionary Genetics has been working on a number of genome sequencing projects. Researchers of the department have sequenced and analyzed Neandertal genomes, a Denisovan genome and a bonobo genome.



Molecular Analysis Reveals the Oldest Denisovan Fossils Yet

Evolutionary Genetics

Denisova Cave has yielded new Denisovan remains associated with archaeological artifacts in its lowermost…


Pleistocene sediment DNA from Denisova Cave

Evolutionary Genetics

Sediment DNA tracks 300,000 years of hominin and animal presence at Denisova Cave


Genomes of the earliest Europeans

Evolutionary Genetics

Ancient genomes shed new light on the earliest Europeans and their relationships with Neandertals