Chinese project probes the genetics of genius
May 15, 2013
Researchers at BGI (formerly the Beijing Genomics Institute) in Shenzhen, China, the largest gene-sequencing facility in the world, are searching for the quirks of DNA that may contribute to genius in an ethically controversial study.
They are scouring the genomes of 1,600 U.S. adolescents who signed up for the Study of Mathematically Precocious Youth (SMPY) in the 1970s, Nature News reports.
Some geneticists say that the study is highly unlikely to find anything of interest because the sample size is too small and intelligence is too complex.
But scientists from BGI’s Cognitive Genomics group hope that their super-smart sample will give them an edge, because they are also using DNA samples from the SMPY recruits, plus samples from more than 500 people BGI recruited — albeit less selectively.