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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Leonardo da Vinci's DNA: Reconstructing His Genome

Scientific A-Team Plans to Reconstruct Leonardo da Vinci's Genome

Art historians, geneticists and other researchers are working together to compile the great artist's DNA

Jason Daley | May 9, 2016

[Blogger's note: DNA from older sources, such as archaeological excavations, can be fragmented consisting of small bits and pieces of the complete DNA strand. Techniques have been developed to bridge these separate pieces from different sources in order to be able to reconstruct the complete DNA strand. In some cases it is possible to fill in the missing pieces due to knowledge from other sources about what should be present at these missing locations. Still in all, this task can be extremely complex and involve manual intervention at many stages. Geneticist Svante Pääbo discusses some of these techniques in his TED Talk at]
Three years from now, the world will celebrate the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death. If a group of scientists get their way, we’ll also be celebrating his rebirth, of sorts. A group of art historians, genealogists, microbiologists, and DNA specialists from France, Italy, Spain, the U.S. and Canada recently released an ambitious roadmap in the journal Human Evolution on how they hope to sequence much of the master painter’s genome by 2019.

Leonardo da Vinci's DNA: Experts unite to shine modern light on a Renaissance genius
"Dr. Rhonda Roby swabs the side of a painting, believed about 500 years old, to obtain materials for studies of its microbiome. The electronic magnifier on the table allows inspection for hairs or other biological materials that might yield DNA." Source:

<more at; related articles and links: (Leonardo da Vinci's DNA: Experts unite to shine modern light on a Renaissance genius. May 5, 2016) and (+Video) (The Leonardo Project: Shedding Light on Life, Genius of Leonardo da Vinci Through DNA Science. May 8, 2016)>

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