The Archaeogenetics of Europe

Pedro Soares, Alessandro Achilli, Ornella Semino, William Davies, Vincent Macaulay, Hans Jürgen Bandelt, Antonio Torroni, Martin B. Richards

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

178 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A new timescale has recently been established for human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) lineages, making mtDNA at present the most informative genetic marker system for studying European prehistory. Here, we review the new chronology and compare mtDNA with Y-chromosome patterns, in order to summarize what we have learnt from archaeogenetics concerning five episodes over the past 50,000 years which significantly contributed to the settlement history of Europe: the pioneer colonisation of the Upper Palaeolithic, the Late Glacial re-colonisation of the continent from southern refugia after the Last Glacial Maximum, the postglacial re-colonization of deserted areas after the Younger Dryas cold snap, the arrival of Near Easterners with an incipient Neolithic package, and the small-scale migrations along continent-wide economic exchange networks beginning with the Copper Age. The available data from uniparental genetic systems have already transformed our view of the prehistory of Europe, but our knowledge of these processes remains limited. Nevertheless, their legacy remains as sedimentary layers in the gene pool of modern Europeans, and our understanding of them will improve substantially when more mtDNAs are completely sequenced, the Y chromosome more thoroughly analysed, and haplotype blocks of the autosomal genome become amenable to phylogeographic studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R174-R183
Number of pages10
JournalCurrent Biology
Volume20
Issue number4
Early online date22 Feb 2010
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 2010
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Mitochondrial DNA
mitochondrial DNA
Y Chromosome
Y chromosome
Chromosomes
Genes
Chronology
Gene Pool
refuge habitats
Genetic Markers
Haplotypes
Copper
haplotypes
copper
History
Economics
Genome
economics
genetic markers
genome

Cite this

Soares, P., Achilli, A., Semino, O., Davies, W., Macaulay, V., Bandelt, H. J., ... Richards, M. B. (2010). The Archaeogenetics of Europe. Current Biology, 20(4), R174-R183. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2009.11.054
Soares, Pedro ; Achilli, Alessandro ; Semino, Ornella ; Davies, William ; Macaulay, Vincent ; Bandelt, Hans Jürgen ; Torroni, Antonio ; Richards, Martin B. / The Archaeogenetics of Europe. In: Current Biology. 2010 ; Vol. 20, No. 4. pp. R174-R183.
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Soares, P, Achilli, A, Semino, O, Davies, W, Macaulay, V, Bandelt, HJ, Torroni, A & Richards, MB 2010, 'The Archaeogenetics of Europe', Current Biology, vol. 20, no. 4, pp. R174-R183. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2009.11.054

The Archaeogenetics of Europe. / Soares, Pedro; Achilli, Alessandro; Semino, Ornella; Davies, William; Macaulay, Vincent; Bandelt, Hans Jürgen; Torroni, Antonio; Richards, Martin B.

In: Current Biology, Vol. 20, No. 4, 23.02.2010, p. R174-R183.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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Soares P, Achilli A, Semino O, Davies W, Macaulay V, Bandelt HJ et al. The Archaeogenetics of Europe. Current Biology. 2010 Feb 23;20(4):R174-R183. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2009.11.054