Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Phylogeographic analysis of human Y chromosome diversity in eastern Africa

Cruciani F1,*, Ippoliti M1, Massaia A1, D'Atanasio E1, Moral P2, Coppa A3, Trombetta B1, Sellitto D4, Pascone R5, Scozzari R1
1Dipartimento di Biologia e Biotecnologie, Sapienza Università di Roma, Rome, Italy
2Departament de Biologia Animal, Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
3Dipartimento di Biologia Ambientale, Sapienza Università di Roma, Rome, Italy
4Istituto di Biologia e Patologia Molecolari, CNR, Rome, Italy
5Dipartimento di Pediatria e Neuropsichiatria Infantile, Sapienza Università di Roma, Rome, Italy

Encompassing an area characterized by enormous geographic variety, as well as ethnic, linguistic and cultural diversity, eastern Africa has seen remarkable levels of human migration and interaction over a very long period of time. Despite its importance for the evolutionary history of our species, this region has nonetheless seen less evolutionary genetic research than other regions in the African continent. In a study of 750 males from 25 eastern African populations, we have analyzed 107 Y-specific biallelic polymorphic markers, many of which here described for the first time. We observed 44 different Y chromosome haplogroups, some of which - haplogroups A-M13/V3, J-M267/V44, E-M215 and E-M329 - showed peculiar and interesting geographic distributions in the region. Phylogeographic analysis of the data showed that the gene pool of eastern Africa has been shaped by different processes associated with the physical geography of the area, social structure of some populations, demic diffusions and important cultural innovations.

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Unfortunately no more detail than the above for now, apparently V44 and V3 are equivalent mutations that have been newly characterized by this team describing the J1 and A1b1b2b (formerly A3b2) lineages respectively, I am assuming other SNPs have also been found, perhaps some of them equivalent to what has already been discovered by the genealogical community.

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