Bryan Sykes on how he became enthralled with nature and natural history.
Our genome sequence does not determine everything that is going to happen to us throughout the rest of our lives.
There are two lines of DNA that are very important and will remain so -- the ones going down your maternal line and your paternal line, and they are very informative. But they only cover a very small part of your genome. We now know a little bit more about how to analyze the other parts of your genome, your other chromosomes. It doesn't help quite so much. Because your genes are shuffled, you’ve got to do a lot of genealogy work to try and work out which bits come from which ancestor.
In Brian Sykes's 2004 book Adam’s Curse: A Future Without Men, he described how male fertility could be decline to the point where men will no longer be able to reproduce naturally. In our recent interview with Dr. Sykes, we asked him what kinds of interventions he would endorse to save the Y chromosome.
Bryan Sykes is the founder and chairman of Oxford Genetics, a genealogical DNA testing firm, a professor of human genetics at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow at Wolfson College. Sykes is the author of The Seven Daughters of Eve, Adam’s Curse, The Human Inheritance: Genes, Language, and Evolution, and his latest release DNA USA: A Genetic Portrait of America. Professor Sykes was the first person to discover the method for recovering DNA from human remains thousands of years old and was the first person to prove that Polynesian peoples originated from Asia as opposed to South America as previously believed. Professor Sykes lives in England.