View Full Version : mtDNA C4b in Europe

Daniel D
11-05-17, 04:26
Hello all,

I am new to the forum, and I have only recently started studying ancient genetics. My wife and I (both Americans of European descent) both took a commercial genetics test (23 and me) to learn our haplogroups. My results were fairly typical (ydna R-L48, mtdna H5). My wife's results were very surprising, however- her mtdna was shown as C4b despite her being essentially 100% European (her overall ancestry composition result was 99.9% European with less than .1% showing as possible East Asian).

Based on my research here and elsewhere, C4b is very rare in Europe and is most commonly found in Siberian peoples. My wife's maternal line is from eastern Poland with no known connections to Siberia.

While this site is a fantastic treasure trove of information about ancient DNA, there's very little here regarding mtdna C4b. I found one table in the article here regarding Prehistoric European DNA frequencies by period showing that mtdna C4 was found in some bodies from the Catacomb culture. Does anyone know the source of this information (we'd like to read the study in which these results were presented)? Has anyone read or encountered any other discussions of C4 (particularly C4b) in ancient Europe? It's an intriguing mystery for us.


05-01-18, 08:42
I too have the C4b haplogroup. My grandmother is 100% Slovak. Her grandparents all came from the Piestany area. Curious to learn more.

Daniel D
18-01-18, 16:20
I too have the C4b haplogroup. My grandmother is 100% Slovak. Her grandparents all came from the Piestany area. Curious to learn more.

We haven't learned much more since I originally posted my question last May. There just doesn't seem to be much information on this topic right now. There has been C4 discovered in remains near the Black Sea from the 3000 BC - 5000 BC time frame, and other types of C mtDNA have been found in the Carpathians.

Perhaps a C4b woman was caught up in the migration of I-E Steppe peoples (or, possibly, the later migration of Uralic peoples) to North Central Europe. Another possibility is that the Mongols brought a C4b woman with them when they invaded Central Europe.

Daniel D
22-01-18, 00:10
I too have the C4b haplogroup. My grandmother is 100% Slovak. Her grandparents all came from the Piestany area. Curious to learn more.

A new study released last week analyzing mtDNA of elite Magyar burials in Hungary from the 10th Century contained two findings of mtDNA C4b, one of whom was an elderly man, the other was an adult woman. The researchers concluded that early, elite Magyar populations developed at least in part from the Huns, who contributed East Asian / Siberian influence. The study can be found at science.sciencemag.org/content/343/6172/747

Hungary bordered Poland, and the Hungarians long dominated the Slovaks. It's possible that your C4b and my wife's came from a woman who traveled to Europe with the Huns or Magyars.

22-01-18, 07:22
Four of the new and two previously published sequences (one Teleut and one Tubalar from the Altai region of southern Siberia, three Poles from northern Poland, and one FamilyTreeDNA project individual of unknown ancestry) clustered into uncommon branch, named C5c, harboring the diagnostic motif 10454-16093-16518T-16527. Several mtDNAs with the same control-region motif were detected earlier at a low frequency in some European, Asian and southern Siberian populations – in Poles (0.4%), Belorussians (0.3%), Romanians (0.6%), Persians (0.2%), Kirghiz (1.1%), Altaians (0.9%), Teleuts (7.5%), Khakassians (0.9%) and Shors (4%) [4], [10], [22]–[28]. With the exception of mtDNAs from southern Siberia, which harbored additional control region transition at np 16291, all other C5c mtDNAs were characterized by another control region mutation at np 16234. The complete mtDNA genome phylogeny confirms that the C5c branch shows an initial split into two sister subclades, one encompassing mtDNAs from Europe (C5c1) and the other consisting of only two sequences from the Altai region of southern Siberia (C5c2) (Figure 2). It appears that European branch C5c1 is more differentiated, as far as two of three sequenced Polish mtDNAs formed a separate branch (C5c1a), defined by a coding region mutation at np 7694. The relatively large amount of internal variation accumulated in the Polish branch of C5c would mean that C5c1 arose in situ in Europe after the arrival of a C5c1 founder mtDNA from southern Siberia, and that C5c1 affiliation is a marker of maternal Siberian ancestry. The phylogeny depicted in Figure S1 provides additional information concerning the entry time of the founder mtDNA – the age of C5c node is estimated as 9.7 (3.17; 16.49) kya when using the sequence variation of the entire genome, and 9.2±4.74 when only synonymous mutations are considered (Table S3). The early presence of mtDNA lineages of eastern Asian ancestry in Europe is further confirmed by the discovery of a N9a haplotype in a Neolithic skeleton from the Szarvas site, located in southeastern Hungary that belonged to the Körös Culture, which appeared in eastern Hungary in the early 8th millennium B.P. [29].

Derenko (2010) has shown that mtDNA haplogroup C5c is a typical southern Siberian haplogroup but it can be found in Poles (0.4%), Belorussians (0.3%), and Romanians (0.6%), too. A C5c1 founder mtDNA came from southern Siberia, which is considered to be a marker of maternal Siberian ancestry. Haplogroup C4b, its sister haplogroup, may have a similar genetic history, and it may have spread to Europe from the Altai region as recently as 6-7 kya.

Daniel D
22-01-18, 17:11
Interesting, ThirdTerm. Thank you for the link.

31-03-18, 19:21
in the america have migration mongol peoples c. maybe you have native american blood i think.
but i see now you say for europe that must be related with mongol / turkic / hunnic empires
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mongol_invasion_of_Poland look at this

and i should be say welcome to our mongoloid family :P