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  #11  
Old 14th February 2014, 11:23 PM
GST GST is offline
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I'm looking forward to seeing Doron's response. The conclusions of the Costa paper rely largely on their analysis that mtDNA haplogroup K, or at least some of its oldest branches, originated in Europe. They have a very superficial analysis of modern population distribution which I think is highly uncertain, although I'd like to get Bill's opinion on this. The lack of Mesolithic K in Europe also raises doubts about their conclusions.

Costa makes a strong case for a southwest Asian origin for haplogroup K, quoting from the supplemental note:
Quote:
Using the whole mitogenome evidence, we can see that haplogroup K dates to ~36 ka and splits into two primary subclades, K1 and K2 although a single sequence from the South Caucasus appears to fall into a third basal branch. This might hint at a Near Eastern origin for haplogroup K as a whole. A Near Eastern origin for haplogroup K might also be suggested by both the Southwest Asian focus of its sister clade U8b1 and the HVS–I diversity pattern (Supplementary Fig. S2). Given the timing of the appearance of haplogroup K, just prior to the global climatic downturn, an origin in the Near East which acted as a major reservoir for mtDNA variation during the glacial period might also more plausibly account for its survival than an origin in Europe.
And yet they then conclude it is more likely that K originated in Europe, largely based on the pre-U8b sample 31,155 ybp at Dolni Vestonice, and current distributions of some subclades of K. I find their argument for a Near Eastern origin more persuasive.

They also recognize a problem with their theory that Jewish K subclades originated in Europe:

Quote:
The question arises as to why an assimilation founder event might draw in several lineages from a single haplogroup (K) from a presumably diverse source population in Europe.
They don't have an answer to that problem, and it seems likely that the explanation is that they lineages did have a Jewish origin. So I think their conclusions are highly uncertain and very likely incorrect. They need to look more carefully at the possibility of Neolithic and more recent expansions of K out of the Near East.
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  #12  
Old 20th August 2014, 09:03 AM
D Yacobi D Yacobi is offline
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Criticism of the article

Let’s start from the positive – as most paternal lineages carried by Ashkenazi Jews seem to trace back to the Levant, yet autosomal DNA tests reveal that Ashkenazi Jews have more European admixture than other Jewish populations, there is a strong assumption that the inflow into the Jewish community most likely occurred on the maternal side.

The problem is, reading through the article, that the authors with a predetermined conclusion in mind, seem to have set out to prove this despite not having sufficient data to do so.

Considering the K halogroups and K1a1b1a in particular (which is the most significant haplogroup making up 20% of total Ashkenazi lineages). As the authors state: “These lineages are extremely infrequent across the Near East and Europe, making the identification of potential source populations very challenging. Nevertheless, they concluded that all four most likely arose in the Near East and were markers of a migration to Europe of people ancestral to the Ashkenazim only ~2,000 years ago”

It is worthwhile repeating why Behar concluded that these haplogroups most likely originated in the Levant – the age of these maternal lineages (which are restricted to Jewish populations) exceeds 2,000 years. The authors admit the same: “K1a1b1a, K1a9 and K2a2a12. These three founder clusters show a strong expansion signal beginning ~2.3 ka” and furthermore “K1a1b1a (slightly re-defined, due to the improved resolution of the new tree) (Fig. 2) accounts for 63% of Ashkenazi K lineages (or ~20% of total Ashkenazi lineages) and dates to ~4.4 ka with maximum likelihood (ML)”. Just to place these results in their historical perspective 2,300 years predates the dispersal of the Jewish population from the Levant to Europe and 4,400 years predates the ancient Israelite kingdoms. Assuming that these haplogroups had originated in “Europe” many hundreds (or even thousands) of years prior to the establishment of the Ashkenazi Jewish community in Europe you would expect to find other non-Jewish individuals carrying ancient versions of these maternal lineages. The opposite is true – as the authors themselves admit those individuals in Europe carrying these maternal lineages nest within the Ashkenazi cluster and the geneflow is from the Ashkenazi community outwards rather than inwards.

In order to get around this problem what the authors do is make a false assumption – that it is possible to gain a better understanding of the origin of the haplogroup by looking at the lineages upstream – so in the case of K1a1b1a the authors examine K1a1b1. This is what they conclude: “The K1a1b1 lineages within which the K1a1b1a sequences nest (including 19 lineages of known ancestry) are solely European, pointing to an ancient European ancestry. The closest nesting lineages are from Italy, Germany and the British Isles, with other subclades of K1a1b1 including lineages from west and Mediterranean Europe and one Hutterite (Hutterites trace their ancestry to sixteenth-century Tyrol)”. There are a number of problems with this conclusion – I will focus on its age. K1a1b1 is by the authors own admission over 10k years old (Figure 2). Do the authors not consider that in the interim ~6,000 years between the appearance of K1a1b1 and the appearance of K1a1b1a the maternal lineage could have possibly migrated to and from the Levant? Since ancient times the Mediterranean basin has been the “central superhighway of transport, trade and cultural exchange between diverse peoples—encompassing three continents: Western Asia, North Africa, and Southern Europe”. During the timeframe in question the Western and Eastern Mediterranean were better connected than the Western Mediterranean was to North Western Europe and the British Isles. If K1a1b1 ended up in the British Isles there is no logical reason it could not have ended up or originated in the Eastern Mediterranean during the many thousands of years of its existence. If anything the paper shows the authors lack of knowledge of the ancient world and their inability to escape from the modern definition of Europe, which is completely irrelevant when looking at haplogroups thousands and tens of thousands of years old.

This is reinforced when the authors make the following statement: “the lack of haplogroup K lineages in Samaritans, who might be expected to have shared an ancestral gene pool with ancient Israelites, both strongly imply that we are unlikely to have missed a hitherto undetected Levantine ‘reservoir’ of haplogroup K variation”. As the Samaritan population numbers 751 closely related individuals as of 2012 (and is actually a population of the verge of extinction) there is no reason whatsoever to think that it is in any way representative of the diversity of the ancient Israelite gene-pool.

This does not mean that K1a1b1a cannot have entered the Ashkenazi Jewish gene-pool in the Northern Mediterranean rather than the Levant, but the age of the haplogroup, and its apparent absence in non-Jewish populations indicates the opposite and until K1a1b1a samples are found amongst different ancestral populations or in ancient samples the fact that it originated in the Levant is the more logical conclusion.

Just to show the fallacy of this idea the authors promote that the geographical spread of a certain haplogroup has any implications for those downstream when looking at time frames of thousands of years let us examine HV1b2. The authors conclude that “HV1b2 mitogenomes, in particular, date to ~2 ka and nest within a cluster of Near Eastern HV1b lineages dating to ~18 ka”. However, HV1b is also found amongst Italians and other European populations, not just around Near Eastern populations. Here are a number of examples:

HV1b 12696
34. AY738942(Italy) Achilli HV1b 13-APR-2007 C150T A263G 309.1C 309.2C 315.1C A750G A1438G A2706G T3290C A4769G A5134G C6263T C7028T A8014T A8860G C9585T T12696C A15218G A15326G C16067T
35. EF657609 mtDNA44(Europe) Herrnstadt HV1b 14-JUL-2007 A750G A1438G A2706G A3547G A4769G G6023A C7028T A8014T A8860G T12696C A15218G A15326G
36. EF657676 mtDNA50(Europe) Herrnstadt HV1b 14-JUL-2007 A750G A1438G A2706G A3547G A4769G G6023A C7028T A8014T A8860G T12696C A15218G A15326G

Using this logic clearly HV1b1 (found amongst for example Yemenite Jews and Assyrians) and HV1b2 (which has recently been identified in a Kurdish individual as well as amongst Ashkenazi Jews) are also “European”.

The truth of the matter is that because of the incredibly ancient timeframes, it is not possible to reach any conclusion as to the origins of a mitochondrial haplogroup based on those halogroups upstream from the one in question and this is ignoring their “very superficial analysis of modern population distribution”.
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  #13  
Old 20th August 2014, 03:06 PM
Aperipatetic1 Aperipatetic1 is offline
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I dont have a personal stake in the matter given that I am not Jewish and not Mtdna 'K'.. but I feel that essentially everyone is either wrong or inaccurately mis-stating what the evidence shows, at a published academic level.

There is nothing inherently European about Hg K, at least in the modern INDO-euro sense.
It may be more of a factor in the pre-indo Euro peoples as evidenced by Otzi, however it did not make a major jump for whatever reason into most modern Europeans, and is a tiny vestigial component in most Europeans today.

I dont see even the REMOTEST rational for suggesting Ashkenazi populations have Maternal "European" heritage IF this is based off of the dominant Hg MTdna K segment of the population, if only for the reason that we find ancient Hg K samples in the Levant/Modern Israel, Lebanon, Syria, going back to 8,000 b.c.

http://www.plosgenetics.org/article/...entation=PNG_M

The sampling if anything, seems to indicate that almost every modern MTdna region from africa, central asia, and europe was probably accounted for in the levant at a very early pre-historic period, including K.

http://www.plosgenetics.org/article/...l.pgen.1004401

Quote:
MtDNA haplogroups could be assigned to 14 out of the 15 skeletons according to the HVS1 sequences obtained and on the diagnostic Single Nucleotide Positions (SNPs) typed following Phylotree rCRS oriented version 15 (Tables 1 and S6). Haplogroup K was the most prevalent, (N = 6, 42.8%) followed by R0 (N = 3, 21.42%) and H (N = 2, 14.28%).
Haplogroup R0 is especially prevalent in the Near East and North Africa with a mean frequency in both regions around 6%. The maximum frequencies of R0 were detected in South Arabian populations such as Bedouin, Oman and Saudi Arabia (Table S7). The rare European haplogroups U* and N* were also detected in 2 individuals in our ancient sample. The mean frequency of haplogroup U* is 2% in the Near East, 0.9% in the Caucasus region and around 1% in Europe, whereas the N* mean frequency is less than 1% in all three datasets.
Finally, the skeleton H8 belonged to the African L3 lineage, this being the most prevalent African haplogroup
While the MT Hg K in Ashkenazic populations could conceivably originate from a central asian or euro maternal ancestry, it could also originate from a levantine population just as likely -
I think in my own personal opinion, the motivation in attempting to proclaim this MT K heritage a European maternal introgression has more to do with attempting to reconcile the difference in dominant maternal heritage between Ashkenazic populations vs. the dominant maternal Hg among Sephardi, Mizrahi etc.., and explain it in a acceptable context that does not disturb other "apple carts", or introduce other issues, as it were.

Last edited by Aperipatetic1; 20th August 2014 at 03:09 PM.
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  #14  
Old 21st August 2014, 11:51 AM
rbmirvin rbmirvin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aperipatetic1 View Post
I dont have a personal stake in the matter given that I am not Jewish and not Mtdna 'K'.. but I feel that essentially everyone is either wrong or inaccurately mis-stating what the evidence shows, at a published academic level.
By that standard, I've somewhat more stake in the matter That doesn't change the fact that valid conversions are known to have been carried out - outside the Levant - in the early centuries of the common era, so at least some percentage of "other" DNA is to be expected among both Sephardim and Ashkenazim. Likewise, given Europe's later history of anti-Semitism in various times and places, it should be expected that some families and communities chose conversion over the other consequences offered. At other times, assimilation would be an ongoing issue for the various Jewish communities.

From what little I've read, Haplogroup K is fairly infrequent in Europe and subglade origins tend to be very hard to pin down - which seems a better match to a scenario of a dispersed Levantine population introgressing into the overall European population over time than the reversed scenario depicted. It might upset some folks to think about how such things may have happened in their own family history, but what's done is done.
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  #15  
Old 21st August 2014, 06:18 PM
josh w. josh w. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbmirvin View Post
By that standard, I've somewhat more stake in the matter That doesn't change the fact that valid conversions are known to have been carried out - outside the Levant - in the early centuries of the common era, so at least some percentage of "other" DNA is to be expected among both Sephardim and Ashkenazim. Likewise, given Europe's later history of anti-Semitism in various times and places, it should be expected that some families and communities chose conversion over the other consequences offered. At other times, assimilation would be an ongoing issue for the various Jewish communities.

From what little I've read, Haplogroup K is fairly infrequent in Europe and subglade origins tend to be very hard to pin down - which seems a better match to a scenario of a dispersed Levantine population introgressing into the overall European population over time than the reversed scenario depicted. It might upset some folks to think about how such things may have happened in their own family history, but what's done is done.
I have not come to a conclusion on this issue. While some conversion took place, conversion is not required, i.e. conversion to Christianity. Maybe European women converted to Judaism.

It is not clear when the Diaspora began. Not all of it was involuntary. Jews began voluntary migration to Greece around the time of Alexander.
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  #16  
Old 21st August 2014, 07:27 PM
Aperipatetic1 Aperipatetic1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbmirvin View Post
By that standard, I've somewhat more stake in the matter That doesn't change the fact that valid conversions are known to have been carried out - outside the Levant - in the early centuries of the common era, so at least some percentage of "other" DNA is to be expected among both Sephardim and Ashkenazim. Likewise, given Europe's later history of anti-Semitism in various times and places, it should be expected that some families and communities chose conversion over the other consequences offered. At other times, assimilation would be an ongoing issue for the various Jewish communities.

From what little I've read, Haplogroup K is fairly infrequent in Europe and subglade origins tend to be very hard to pin down - which seems a better match to a scenario of a dispersed Levantine population introgressing into the overall European population over time than the reversed scenario depicted. It might upset some folks to think about how such things may have happened in their own family history, but what's done is done.
I totally understand that people simply want to KNOW as pertains to these issues, and particularly when it relates to their own direct line maternal and paternal ancestry - even though those lines are really not any more genetically significant than any of the other ancestral components and contributions.

When it comes to their own maternal and paternal line people want some sort of denouement in which the entire story is conclusively revealed and explained, and in a lot of cases I think science often 'jumps the gun' on these topics especially when utilizing media coverage which rewards sexy, attention-grabbing or titillating headlines, and this coverage and funding is so important to those doing the work or writing the papers.

In the case of the Ashkenazi MT K conundrum, we are lucky to have some significant ancient MT results that not only place that Hg in the Levant historically, but we can positively place MT 'K' in the Levant dating to 8k B.C.E. We cannot say this is a proto-Semitic cultural population at that point in time, or infer any other cultural aspects to the population, only note that the Hg is in-situ in the exact region we would expect to be the Ashkenazic populations home region of cultural origin.

I am only thinking out loud and absolutely do not place any certitude to the suggestion, but one possible reason (among all too many) for the reason that we find a different Mt Hg mosaic among Ashkenazic, Mizrahi and Sephardic populations could be that these groups were not only affected by some introgression during their dispersal,
but could differ in modern times due to incorporating Canaanite, Moabite, Ammonite etc.. maternal regional populations to lesser/greater scale in their respective home regions of Israel/Judea, in a very early period.

In any event, to me, this would definitely be a 'no-call' at this point as uneventful as that is for those seeking that 'denouement', simply because we can in fact clearly place Mt K as a significant component in at least some Levantine early population(s), and we cannot rule out a later introgression post-dispersal in Europe, Central/West Asia, etc... A refinement of mutations in ancient Levantine samples vs. modern regional samples might offer a better idea of when or where K fits in, but I dont think any higher resolution conclusion is supported at this point.
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  #17  
Old 22nd August 2014, 06:11 AM
josh w. josh w. is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by josh w. View Post
I have not come to a conclusion on this issue. While some conversion took place, conversion is not required, i.e. conversion to Christianity. Maybe European women converted to Judaism.

It is not clear when the Diaspora began. Not all of it was involuntary. Jews began voluntary migration to Greece around the time of Alexander.
Sorry, I now understand the point about conversion to Christianity. Still not sure if this explains the nesting pattern. The usual pattern was for Jewish males to marry Gentile women and remain Jewish. Jews were tolerated in ancient Greece and Rome until the rise of Christianity when there was more pressure to convert.
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  #18  
Old 22nd August 2014, 06:27 AM
josh w. josh w. is offline
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Originally Posted by josh w. View Post
Sorry, I now understand the point about conversion to Christianity. Still not sure if this explains the nesting pattern. The usual pattern was for Jewish males to marry Gentile women and remain Jewish. Jews were tolerated in ancient Greece and Rome until the rise of Christianity when there was more pressure to convert.
There was a significant constraint on the effects of Jewish introgression. Until the 1300s the Jewish population in Europe was rather small.
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  #19  
Old 26th January 2018, 06:38 PM
khazaria khazaria is offline
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Regarding the controversies over the Ashkenazic mtDNA haplogroups K1a1b1a and K2a2a:

Samuel Andrews, the researcher who runs the website mtdnawiki.com and the blog mtdnaatlas.blogspot.com, proposes on the pages below that K1a1b1 originated about 10,000 years ago and came into Europe during the mass-migration of Anatolian farmers, and that its branch k1a1b1a originated about 7,000 years ago in Hungary.

He further proposes that K2a began life about 7,000-8,000 years ago in Germany.

http://mtdnawiki.com/k/
http://mtdnawiki.com/2018/01/21/what-is-european-mtdna/
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  #20  
Old 9th February 2018, 12:38 PM
loobster loobster is offline
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Both links gave me "This site can't be reached", its server IP address could not be found.
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