Vanessa Hayes - Defining Human Diversity - TEDxSanDiego 2012
photo attribution: sean dreilinger durak.org
Dr Vanessa M. Hayes (Ph.D.)
J. Craig Venter Institute, San Diego, CA
Dr. Hayes work focuses on defining the extent of human DNA diversity and how this diversity impacts human health, behavior and adaptations. In 2010, she made headlines by co-leading a study to define the extent of human diversity by generating the genome (complete DNA sequence) of South African Noble Peace Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and a Bushman (hunter-gatherer) from the Kalahari region of Namibia. Published in Nature in 2010, this work was the first genome sequence of an indigenous person. She has continued with research within the indigenous populations in Southern Africa, as well as being a proponent for genomic development within Africa and global health disparities between African and non-African countries. Dr. Hayes is the recipient of numerous awards, including a Fulbright Australian-American Professional Scholarship, the Ruth Stephens Gani Medal for Human Genetics and the New South Wales Premier?s Award for Outstanding Cancer Research.