16 Mar 2010

World's shortest man dies at 21

2:58 pm on 16 March 2010

The world's shortest man, He Pingping, who stood just under 75 centimetres, has died aged 21.

He - a native of China who had a form of primordial dwarfism - was in Rome taking part in a television show when he suffered chest problems and died in hospital, AFP reports.

The editor-in-chief of Britain's Guinness World Records, Craig Glenday, says he recalls measuring He in 2008.

Mr Glenday says he had a mischievous personality and was an inspiration to anyone considered "different or unusual".

Guinness World Records says it will announce his successor as the world's shortest man in due course.

Khagendra Thapa Magar, 18, of Nepal, who is reportedly 51cm high, declared in February this year that he is the rightful holder of the title.