Anthropology and Human Genetics

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Single Cell Genomics Platform

Previously genomics studies have investigated pools of cells and thus only looked at averages of cell populations. Employing single cell genomics approaches, we want to overcome averaging and learn more about the different cell-types the samples are composed of.
Single-cell mRNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) allows to profile the heterogeneity of cell populations, offering exciting possibilities to tackle a variety of biological and medical questions.

 We have established 3 methods for scRNA-seq:

  1. Smart-seq on the Fluidigm microfluidic platform C1
  2. FACS-based SCRB-seq 
  3. the microdroplet emulsion method Drop-seq.

This range of available methods with their unique strengths gives us the option to choose appropriately for diverse scientific questions.

These recent advancements in single-cell moloecular profiling allows the profiling of the cellular composition of the human body. The international collaborative effort of the Human Cell Atlas Project aims to define all human cell types. We are an active member of this project (white paper).