Reconciling evidence from ancient and contemporary genomes: A major source for the European Neolithic within Mediterranean Europe

Joana B. Pereira, Marta D. Costa, Daniel Vieira, Maria Pala, Lisa Bamford, Nourdin Harich, Lotfi Cherni, Farida Alshamali, Jiři Hatina, Sergey Rychkov, Gheorghe Stefanescu, Turi King, Antonio Torroni, Pedro Soares, Luísa Pereira, Martin B. Richards

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Abstract

Important gaps remain in our understanding of the spread of farming into Europe, due partly to apparent contradictions between studies of contemporary genetic variation and ancient DNA. It seems clear that farming was introduced into central, northern, and eastern Europe from the south by pioneer colonization. It is often argued that these dispersals originated in the Near East, where the potential source genetic pool resembles that of the early European farmers, but clear ancient DNA evidence from Mediterranean Europe is lacking, and there are suggestions that Mediterranean Europe may have resembled the Near East more than the rest of Europe in the Mesolithic. Here, we test this proposal by dating mitogenome founder lineages from the Near East in different regions of Europe. We find that whereas the lineages date mainly to the Neolithic in central Europe and Iberia, they largely date to the Late Glacial period in central/eastern Mediterranean Europe. This supports a scenario in which the genetic pool of Mediterranean Europe was partly a result of Late Glacial expansions from a Near Eastern refuge, and that this formed an important source pool for subsequent Neolithic expansions into the rest of Europe.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20161976
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume284
Issue number1851
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Mar 2017

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genome
Genes
Genome
DNA
Middle East
Eastern Europe
Central European region
late glacial
Agriculture
farming systems
Europe
Eastern European region
Mesolithic
Northern European region
Iberian Peninsula
refuge
genetic variation
colonization
farmers
testing

Cite this

Pereira, Joana B. ; Costa, Marta D. ; Vieira, Daniel ; Pala, Maria ; Bamford, Lisa ; Harich, Nourdin ; Cherni, Lotfi ; Alshamali, Farida ; Hatina, Jiři ; Rychkov, Sergey ; Stefanescu, Gheorghe ; King, Turi ; Torroni, Antonio ; Soares, Pedro ; Pereira, Luísa ; Richards, Martin B. / Reconciling evidence from ancient and contemporary genomes : A major source for the European Neolithic within Mediterranean Europe. In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 2017 ; Vol. 284, No. 1851.
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Pereira, JB, Costa, MD, Vieira, D, Pala, M, Bamford, L, Harich, N, Cherni, L, Alshamali, F, Hatina, J, Rychkov, S, Stefanescu, G, King, T, Torroni, A, Soares, P, Pereira, L & Richards, MB 2017, 'Reconciling evidence from ancient and contemporary genomes: A major source for the European Neolithic within Mediterranean Europe', Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol. 284, no. 1851, 20161976. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2016.1976

Reconciling evidence from ancient and contemporary genomes : A major source for the European Neolithic within Mediterranean Europe. / Pereira, Joana B.; Costa, Marta D.; Vieira, Daniel; Pala, Maria; Bamford, Lisa; Harich, Nourdin; Cherni, Lotfi; Alshamali, Farida; Hatina, Jiři; Rychkov, Sergey; Stefanescu, Gheorghe; King, Turi; Torroni, Antonio; Soares, Pedro; Pereira, Luísa; Richards, Martin B.

In: Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Vol. 284, No. 1851, 20161976, 22.03.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T2 - A major source for the European Neolithic within Mediterranean Europe

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AU - Costa, Marta D.

AU - Vieira, Daniel

AU - Pala, Maria

AU - Bamford, Lisa

AU - Harich, Nourdin

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AU - Alshamali, Farida

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AU - Rychkov, Sergey

AU - Stefanescu, Gheorghe

AU - King, Turi

AU - Torroni, Antonio

AU - Soares, Pedro

AU - Pereira, Luísa

AU - Richards, Martin B.

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