The Neanderthal Genome Project Begins

The BBC has a short article on the first DNA isolated from a Neanderthal’s nucleus. (Previous efforts have gotten DNA from their mitochondria, which are small energy-generating organelles.) The results, announced at a meeting, are the fruits of a new method for extracting genetic information from fossils. Theoretically it should be possible to pull together a lot of pieces of Neanderthal DNA into something approaching a genome. We’ll have to wait for the big paper for the details, but these early clues suggest it will be worth the wait.

Update: More from John Hawks here.