In DepthGenetics

High altitude may have driven short stature in Peruvians

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Science  18 May 2018:
Vol. 360, Issue 6390, pp. 696
DOI: 10.1126/science.360.6390.696

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Hundreds of genes influence how tall a person is, but most make an imperceptible difference—perhaps a millimeter, for example. Now, a group studying the genetics of Peruvians, one of the world's shorter populations, has turned up a gene variant that cuts a person's height by more than 2 centimeters on average. The finding came out of tuberculosis study of 4000 residents of Lima wherein height was also measured. So far, the gene variant is not known outside Peru, where the demands of living at high altitude may have driven its evolution, but it could offer clues about how other mutations influence height.