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Life Time Achievement – by Genomic Medicine, UK

In 2020 Dec, Prof. Pitchappan has been honoured with– Life Time Achievement for his pioneering work on Leprosy, Tuberculosis, Human population Genetics and The Genographic by the Genomic Medicine Consortium, UK. He is one of the eight from India and one of 30 from the world.

Visiting Professor – MKU – aDNA

From 2019 on, on the invitation of TNG archaeology and Madurai Kamaraj University, Pitchappan is directing the aDNA research in Tamil Nadu: Many recently excavated archaeological sites from Tamil Nadu, including Keezhadi, Athichanallur, and datee of 600–900 BC thus preponing the Sangam age. The last 2020 excavation in Konthagai/Keezhadi burial yard has yielded 30 skeletal remains and these are analysed by Prof. Kumaresan, Chairman, School of Biological sciences for aDNA by WGS techniques under the guidance of Prof. Pitchappan. A state of the art aDNA laboratory, seconf of its kind in India, funded by UGC and State Govt is being set up at MKU in the School of Biological Sciences: they work in close association with stalwarts from within and outside India.

Key note speaker – plenary – 10th world Tamil Conference, Chicago, USA

Prof. Pitchappan & Dr. Spencer Wells The Director, The Genographic project, were the key note speakers in the plenary of the 10th world Tamil Conference, Chicago, USA – 7th July2019: their lectures on ‘The Genographic’ and ‘The Dravidian – a living civilization of yester millenia’ were well received. The event organized by Federation of Tamil Societies in USA was inaugurated by the Minister for Culture, Moifa PandiaRajan, Tamil Nadu Govt and was attended by 3,000 Tamils living in USA. On 5th July Prof. Pitchappan also presented a lecture on ‘Arrival of Nagarathar in Chettinad’, in the Nagarathar Convention, organized by NSNA, Nagarathar Sangam of North America, at Baltimore. Following these meetings he toured Eastern parts of USA and delivered lectures at Columbus Tamil Sangam, visited National Geographic society and discussed about future research research on aDNA and Mankind in India. On return, Shanmuganathapuram Nagarathar and Nattar offered a facilitation to Justice Chokalingam and Prof. Pitchappan for participating in the World Tamil Conference and Nagarathar convention.


His recent paper in 2019, defined the pre–Aryan heritage of the Brokpa, a Dardic speaking hill tribes from Dah–Hanu Leh, Ladak – Jammu & Kashmir J&K region (web liñk). He has also deciphered and published the modus operandi of caste formation in India by studying his own Nattukottai Nagarathar community (web liñk): it was indeed the migration of disparate male lineages arriving at a given province, amalgamated with pre-existing early settlers as a disparate marriageable clan thus forming a caste. Other communities in India also seems to follow similar pattern, that suggesting an overall template for caste formation in India.


The "Virumandi" legacy, the descendants of the first Out of Africa immigrants into India, is still celebrated and many international visitors all are surprised to hear the history and culture of the community. An NGO run by Ms. Lily Bhavna, at Allahabad and Perth, Australia and Mr. Roger Perry the Boomerang player and international champion was hosted by MKU. They demonstrated the returnable boomerang in three places on three days and was also were also excited to see the iron Boomerang collections, worshiped in hundreds, in Kovilankulam temple – near Jothirmanickam village. Many are amazed to see the link between Africa a¬nd India and a Botswana-India tourism corridor is planned by philanthropic entrepreneurs from Kerala and Prof. Pitchappan is an advisor to them.


The coming years will be very important for him and the country, in understanding the pride and antiquity of Tamils, Prof. Pitchappan feels. He also continues his research on tribal health as the Vice-President of NAWA (Nilgiri Adivasi Welfare association, Kotagiri), a 60 year old NGO established by Late Dr. Padmashree Narasimhan.

Not to compromise in science,
Pitchappan aims at 'India-centric research' with appropriate technologies and interdisciplinary approach

'Rigorous, precise and conscientious'
- Prof. Jean Dausset - 1981, Paris
The discoverer of the HLA system

Software tools solve mysteries of human origins, crimes


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