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  • Arch Yeomans
    replied
    yeah more data is good...

    Originally posted by Johnserrat
    Clearly, we need far more data than that which is currently available. We cannot base conclusions on 50 samples representing 12,000 years or more of european history. So far, as indicated by Haak et al., there is no archeological evidence for a major post-early Neolithic population replacement in western europe, making the Paleolithic survival theory more likely. It will be fascinating to see how this debate plays out as more data becomes available.
    50 samples representing 12,000 years of history is of no particular value. I'll go with the more ancient Paleolithic survival theories. Who knows, I could be wrong next week or right tomorrow.

    Leave a comment:


  • Kathleen Carrow
    replied
    Originally posted by vraatyah
    Stevo, 2 years ago I used to post on that list and then abandoned it. The reason is the absence of any serious interest in mtDNA and population studies there. On the other hand, I'm not interested in STRs and their mutation rate.

    That is a good point, I think.
    I have seen a few thoughtful scholars even at the Rootsweb site, who do not agree with the paper.

    I am not sure what I think and surely have to re-read Oppenheimer and finish Barry Cunliffe before I decide.
    I agree with you about the interest in population studies at Rootsweb site..I like a more balanced look at the question.

    Leave a comment:


  • Johnserrat
    replied
    Levy-Coffman's article in JOGG makes for interesting reading. It should be noted that some of the research she challenges has not gone unchallenged in the academic literature. For example Haak et al.'s conclusions were responded to by Ammerman et al. in: "Comment on "Ancient DNA from the First European Farmers in 7500-Year-Old Neolithic Sites"

    This comment is worth reading:

    "Haak et al. (1) recently put forward an argument for the Paleolithic ancestry of modern Europeans based on the idea that a single genetic type (N1a), which is supposed to be common among early Neolithic women in Europe, is rarely seen in populations today. In our view, their study fails to acknowledge the appropriate caveats, which we outline here: (i) Haak et al. (1) present their argument as if it holds for all of Europe. However, the human skeletons they analyzed came only from Central Europe, making any claim with respect to Europe as a whole premature. (ii) The study of mitochondrial DNA permits inferences to be made for only one sex. In short, the scenario Haak et al. present may pertain to the first farmers' wives and daughters but not necessarily to the first farmers themselves. An alternative way to explain the cases of the N1a type is by means of marriage patterns, that is, some early Neolithic farmers taking Mesolithic (hunter-gatherer) wives (2, 3). (iii) The sample size in the original study (1) is very small; only 24 cases gave positive results for mitochondrial DNA, of which 6 had the special type. It is therefore too early to make the claim that "this type formerly was widespread among Neolithic farmers in Central Europe" on the basis of so few cases. To make a reliable claim of this kind, one needs a sample size that is much larger. (iv) Basing an argument on a single trait or genetic type is often risky in human population biology. Here again, the authors do not voice due caution. Greater use should be made of the full ensemble of genetic evidence to bolster the argument. In addition, morphometric studies can provide useful information on patterns of variability among populations at the time of the Neolithic transition (4).

    There is a less obvious and yet even more serious archaeological problem with the Haak et al. study. Not all of the skeletons analyzed are actually those of the first farmers in Europe. In the eastern part of Central Europe, the Linear pottery culture (Linearband-keramik or LBK) (5500 to 5000 cal B.C.) arose after the Neolithic transition, which took place in the context of the Körös, Starevo, and Çris cultures (starting 6000 cal B.C.) (5–7). By the time of the relatively late Alföld linear pottery culture (AVK) at Ecsegfalva in eastern Hungary [represented by one N1a individual in (1)], some 700 years had elapsed since the first appearance of farming in the region (8) (Fig. 1). In addition, Flomborn, another site represented by an N1a individual, dates to a fairly recent phase of the LBK. This chronological disparity (9) was not acknowledged in (1). In effect, the samples analyzed represent both the first farmers and more recent farmers (as many as 28 human generations later in the case of Ecsegfalva). According to the argument set forth by Haak et al., the N1a type should have already disappeared among more recent farmers, ostensibly due to swamping by the indigenist Mesolithic population at the time of the Neolithic transition. Thus, their claim that the first farmers did not leave a lasting genetic mark is contradicted by their own data, namely the long-term persistence of the N1a type at Ecsegfalva. This chronologically mixed picture is not taken into account in their simulation study of genetic drift.

    ...

    Haak et al. (1) report findings on mitochondrial DNA that are of interest, and such work needs to be encouraged. However, the argument they set forth with respect to the ancestry of modern Europeans rests on two working assumptions: (i) that the occurrence of the N1a type among the first farmwomen of Central Europe has its source in the first farmwomen of southeastern Europe (who spread to Central Europe as part of the Neolithic transition) and (ii) that N1a is not present in the local Mesolithic (late hunter-gatherer) populations of Central Europe. Empirical studies have yet to be carried out in either case. More work remains to be done before definite conclusions can be drawn about European ancestry as a whole."

    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/conten...312/5782/1875a

    Haak et al. also responded to the comment and clarified their position as to what the purpose of their article was and whether their conclusions had general application in "Response to Comment on "Ancient DNA from the First European Farmers in 7500-Year-Old Neolithic Sites"

    They reply:

    "Our study (1) described the discovery of the mitochondrial type N1a in 6 out of 24 Central European Neolithic skeletons, which was unexpected because today this type is found at 150-times lower frequency in Europe. We offered two possible explanations for our observations. First, female Early Neolithic farmers could have been replaced by immigrant women after the early Neolithic (post–early-Neolithic replacement theory). Second, the female early Neolithic farmers could have been genetically diluted by resident native hunter-gatherers (Paleolithic survival theory). Both interpretations are compatible with our genetic data. Because there is so far no archaeological evidence for a major post–early-Neolithic population replacement, we suggested that the Paleolithic survival theory is more likely.

    In their comment, Ammerman et al. (2) raise concerns about our study and call for further ancient DNA studies. First, the authors may have misread the central question asked in our study. We tackled the question of the fate of the early European farmers [as represented by the Neolithic skeletons of the Linear pottery culture (LBK)], that is, whether modern central Europeans are descended from them or not. In contrast, Ammerman et al. imply that our study deals with questions on the origin of the early European farmers, such as whether the female lineages in the farmer skeletons were immigrants from southeastern Europe or whether they were local Mesolithic women who intermarried with incoming males. Irrespective of this misunderstanding, the origin of the farmers remains an important question, and the plight of the early farmers' descendants outlined in our study, along with the intriguing ancient DNA data, may one day contribute to a better understanding of farming origins.

    We believe it is worthwhile to clarify the points that Ammerman and colleagues usefully raise. Regarding the point that we should have analyzed far more than 24 samples, we point out that our main conclusions (1) were based on statistically significant results. Furthermore, we carefully examined the sample locations and mitochondrial DNA types to exclude the possibility of biased sampling. Ammerman et al. (2) are correct that one of our 24 skeletons, namely the one from Ecsegfalva, is not a "first" farmer but only an "early" farmer, as far as eastern Hungary is concerned. We included this skeleton in our analysis because it is culturally and chronologically closely related to our actual focus, the first farmers in the LBK area of neighboring Central Europe (Fig. 1). The other 23 skeletons represent the first full farming populations in their local LBK regions; this is particularly the case for the Flomborn site, which is among the first LBK colonies west of the Rhine and is also the type-site for the "Flomborn" phase, which we calculate to have started around 5400 cal BC (3).

    ...

    Finally, Ammerman et al. suggest analyzing more samples and further (i.e., nonmitochondrial) genetic loci. We encourage such projects to help illuminate aspects of European prehistory that were not the focus of our more modest study. We caution, however, that in our experience, only about 15% of morphologically well-preserved skeletons contain amplifiable nuclear DNA. Thus, on average, we would expect Y-chromosomal DNA from only about 7.5% of a skeletal sample. The logistic challenge of such a project is not inconsiderable, although new data would be most welcome. Finally, we agree with Ammerman and colleagues that morphological data are useful, for example, for examining the Paleolithic survival theory (5)."

    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/conten...312/5782/1875b

    In the end, Levy-Coffman commits some of the same sins she identifies in the literature; namely: she overstates her conclusions by relying on data obtained from very small samples, that are not necessarily representative of paleolithic or neolithic populations, and does not provide proper archeological context for her conclusion that "we are not our ancestors."

    Clearly, we need far more data than that which is currently available. We cannot base conclusions on 50 samples representing 12,000 years or more of european history. So far, as indicated by Haak et al., there is no archeological evidence for a major post-early Neolithic population replacement in western europe, making the Paleolithic survival theory more likely. It will be fascinating to see how this debate plays out as more data becomes available.

    John

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  • vraatyah
    replied
    That's an N*. 2 in Kivisild 2002, one in Quintana-Murci 2004 (Iran) and one (more distant) in Barnabas 2005.

    Leave a comment:


  • father_R2
    replied
    Vraatya:
    There is one N(111 144 223 256 311) in Kivisild et al. 2003 paper. The female is either Chenchu or Koya (two Dravidian tribes). Is that N N1a? Thanks.

    Reference:
    The Genetic Heritage of the Earliest Settlers Persists Both in Indian Tribal
    and Caste Populations

    Leave a comment:


  • vraatyah
    replied
    Maybe. However, the sequence is the same as the variants from Mountain 1995 paper.

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  • father_R2
    replied
    Vraatya:
    Baig 2004, N1a belongs to an Iranian. I think they are later migrants than Parsees.

    Leave a comment:


  • vraatyah
    replied
    Originally posted by Stevo
    Most of the reactions to it that have appeared on the Rootsweb DNA List have said just the opposite.

    I think the main point of the paper is extremely well made: one cannot rely on the genetic make-up of modern populations to make dogmatic assertions about ancient and especially prehistoric populations.

    It cites actual published, peer-reviewed scientific studies to make that point and does so in a compelling, cogent, and well-written fashion.

    Stevo, 2 years ago I used to post on that list and then abandoned it. The reason is the absence of any serious interest in mtDNA and population studies there. On the other hand, I'm not interested in STRs and their mutation rate.

    Leave a comment:


  • vraatyah
    replied
    Father_R2: indeed. Among 6 published Indian N1a, 4 are from the Karnataka and Kerala Brahmans, 1 from Lambadi (Andhra) and, finally, 1 Maharashtran from Baig's 2004 y study. Unfortunately, I don't know whether the latter sample was
    from a Caste or tribal group. Except for the Lambadi one, all the sequences are pretty close to each other.


    Valery

    Leave a comment:


  • Stevo
    replied
    Originally posted by vraatyah
    Although I read the paper twice, I cannot extract any clear and useful conclusions from it. Too mosaic, too inconsistent. One can conclude equally well that aDNA is an absolutely useless thing, rather than reverse all we've gained for the last 15 years.
    Most of the reactions to it that have appeared on the Rootsweb DNA List have said just the opposite.

    I think the main point of the paper is extremely well made: one cannot rely on the genetic make-up of modern populations to make dogmatic assertions about ancient and especially prehistoric populations.

    It cites actual published, peer-reviewed scientific studies to make that point and does so in a compelling, cogent, and well-written fashion.

    But to each his own.

    Leave a comment:


  • father_R2
    replied
    Error in the paper

    The paper is oblivious of the fact that those four Brahmins with N1a in fact speak Dravidian language(Kannada) and not any Indo-Aryan language. None of the South Indian Brahmins speak Indo-Aryan languages and there is no recorded history that they were Indo-Aryan speakers before(Only the later historical migrants speak Indo-Aryan languages). Again as you come down to south mtDNA profile of Brahmins closely matches that of locals.

    Again another person with N1a belongs to a Gypsy community called Lambani who are not part of caste system. Interestingly, Lambanis have very high R1b which till date is not at observed among Brahmins in all of India.

    Well, there are many factual mistakes in Genetic studies of Indians conducted by Non-Indians. As one of the senior persons at a Genetic Research centre in India whom I spoke to told me that many of them are ignorant of various cultural complications of India and tend to simplify and generalize the findings. It is better to wait for a comprehensive study of South-West coastal Indians before drawing any conclusions based on Indian Genetic profile.

    Leave a comment:


  • Eki
    replied
    Since Ken Nordvedt released a new I1a modal haplotype called I1a-N-Bothnia,
    which is mostly found in Finland and Sweden, and to which most Finnish I1a seem to belong, I've started to think that maybe they were from the same clan. It's what geneticists would call a "founder effect". Some say the Kainulaiset
    of Kvenland were the same as what the Vikings called Kylfings.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kvenland
    http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/egil/egil11.htm

    I can't find much information on Kylfings, but there is info on
    Scylfings:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scylfing

    Maybe they were the same? Their clan had branched from the Yngling dynasty, which is said to have been the oldest Scandinavian dynasty. The Fairhair dynasty that the Norwegian Viking-age kings were descended had also branched from the Ynglings. And just like the Fairhair dynasty, the Scylfings started their family tree from Fornjot, the legendary king of Gotland (or Geatland), Kvenland and Finland:


    http://www.northvegr.org/lore/oldheathen/073.php
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norr

    If that's true, most I1a in Finland isn't much older than the Migration Period,
    and if I1a-N and uN in Norway was founded by the Fairhair dynasty, the same applies to Norway as well.

    http://www.northvegr.org/lore/oldheathen/073.php
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norr

    Leave a comment:


  • vraatyah
    replied
    Although I read the paper twice, I cannot extract any clear and useful conclusions from it. Too mosaic, too inconsistent. One can conclude equally well that aDNA is an absolutely useless thing, rather than reverse all we've gained for the last 15 years.

    Leave a comment:


  • Stevo
    started a topic New Paper - We Are Not Our Ancestors

    New Paper - We Are Not Our Ancestors

    Here is the link to the long-awaited new paper by Ellen Levy-Coffman, We Are Not Our Ancestors: Evidence for Discontinuity between Prehistoric and Modern Europeans.

    Check it out.
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