Chimp genome mapped

September 2, 2005

Academics have passed a scientific milestone by piecing together the genetic blueprint of the chimpanzee, the journal Nature reported this week.

The new analysis promises greater insight into human evolution, having confirmed that 96 per cent of chimp and human genomes are exactly the same.

Simon Fisher of the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics at Oxford University called the unveiling of the draft chimp genome sequence "a scientific milestone" with far-reaching implications for research.

Chris Stringer, a leading expert on human origins at the Natural History Museum in London, said that the paper was particularly timely given the growth of anti-evolutionary ideas in the US.

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