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Index – Science – Chimpanzee research has reached a new stage

An international research team led by the Institute for Evolutionary Biology (IBE), the German Center for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (MPI EVA) and the University of Leipzig has compiled the largest catalog of the genomes of wild animals. Chimpanzee groups. For the first time, we were able to sequence genomic information obtained from hundreds of fecal samples from chimpanzees.

The cell genomics The new atlas published in the journal is able to map the routes and sources of the illegal trade, so it can also be used to protect endangered species.

Due to limited fossil records and a lack of ancient DNA data, the genetics of the chimpanzee population is limited to individuals today. There are currently four species of chimpanzees: the eastern Nigerian, western African, central and eastern African subspecies, but it is not yet clear whether the genetic diversity of the central and eastern groups really means two distinct subspecies or if the differences were due to distance. This question also raises the extent to which the subspecies are related, which requires a detailed reconstruction of the demographic history of chimpanzee groups.

Determining genetic relationships and the role of environmental changes affecting them may be related to behavioral differences in chimpanzee communities.

Comprehensive genomic knowledge of poachers may also be useful in discovering fishing hotspots.

The population history of an endangered species may be an important factor in conservation, but data on the complete genome of chimpanzees are scarce. A newly completed non-invasive geographical catalog capture by capture of chromosome 21 828 samples collected at 48 sampling sites in Africa. The four subspecies identified show clear genetic differentiation, and the newly described modifications allow for detailed reconstruction of stratification, isolation, migration, and linkage-induced species diversity—even as a result of admixture with bonobos.

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Unlike humans, there have been no long-term migrations in chimpanzee history that could limit the transmission of culture. Based on a few local differences, a precise geolocation approach was used, which allowed a more accurate determination of the origin of chimpanzees.

(Cover photo: Sumi Sadurni/AFP)