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Thread: Native American Genes found in Icelandic Families

  1. #1
    Regular Member Aristander's Avatar
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    Native American Genes found in Icelandic Families

    Vikings Possibly Carried Native American to Europe




    THE GIST
    • DNA analysis reveals that four families in Iceland possess genes typically found in Native Americans or East Asians.
    • Genealogical evidence revealed that these families shared a distant ancestor from the same region.
    • The Vikings may have brought back a Native American woman with them after they arrived in the New World.
    The first Native American to arrive in Europe may have been a woman brought to Iceland by the Vikings more than 1,000 years ago, a study by Spanish and Icelandic researchers suggests.

    The findings boost widely-accepted theories, based on Icelandic medieval texts and a reputed Viking settlement in Newfoundland in Canada, that the Vikings reached the American continent several centuries before Christopher Columbus traveled to the "New World."
    Spain's CSIC scientific research institute said genetic analysis of around 80 people from a total of four families in Iceland showed they possess a type of DNA normally only found in Native Americans or East Asians.
    "It was thought at first that (the DNA) came from recently established Asian families in Iceland," CSIC researcher Carles Lalueza-Fox was quoted as saying in a statement by the institute. "But when family genealogy was studied, it was discovered that the four families were descended from ancestors who lived between 1710 and 1740 from the same region of southern Iceland."
    The lineage found, named C1e, is also mitochondrial, which means that the genes were introduced into Iceland by a woman.
    "As the island was virtually isolated from the 10th century, the most likely hypothesis is that these genes corresponded to an Amerindian woman who was brought from America by the Vikings around the year 1000," said Lalueza-Fox.
    The researchers used data from the Rejkjavik-based genomics company deCODE Genetics.
    He said the research team hopes to find more instances of the same Native American DNA in Iceland's population, starting in the same region in the south of the country near the massive Vatnajokull glacier.
    The report, by scientists from the CSIC and the University of Iceland, was also published in the latest edition of the American Journal of Physical Anthropology.
    The journal said 75 to 80 percent of contemporary Icelanders can trace their lineage to Scandinavia and the rest to Scotland and Ireland.
    But the C1e lineage is "one of a handful that was involved in the settlement of the Americas around 14,000 years ago.
    "Contrary to an initial assumption that this lineage was a recent arrival (in Iceland), preliminary genealogical analyses revealed that the C1 lineage was present in the Icelandic mitochondrial DNA pool at least 300 years ago" said the journal. "This raised the intriguing possibility that the Icelandic C1 lineage could be traced to Viking voyages to the Americas that commenced in the 10th century."

  2. #2
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    Very interesting indeed. Lalueza-Fox is very credible and in 2004 found traces of Western Mtdna in the remains of Steppe nomads.

    I can believe the scenario suggested here of a Native American woman brought [or enslaved?] by Norwegians from America to Iceland. What other explanation fits? None as far as I can see.

  3. #3
    Advisor LeBrok's Avatar
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    Well, other option is that C1 settled North Europe 3-4-5 thousand years ago. Vikings and IE came, killed the men and took over women. Is C maternal affiliated with Q Y haplo?

  4. #4
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    That story pretty.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    Well, other option is that C1 settled North Europe 3-4-5 thousand years ago. Vikings and IE came, killed the men and took over women. Is C maternal affiliated with Q Y haplo?
    Where is the evidence for this colourful scenario?

    I've just read the paper, and the authors claim that the C1 does not actually fit with existing Native American C1 groups and could be a new cluster. So they are not ruling out a European or Asian origin. I made my first comments thinking that the C1 did fit with existing Native American C1.

    Maybe another alternative explanation is that the Mtdna belongs to the Icelandic musician, Bjork. She is certainly unique...

  6. #6
    Advisor LeBrok's Avatar
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    I thought the C1 maternal story might have something to do with Q Y-hg discussed here:
    http://www.eupedia.com/forum/showthread.php?t=25927

  7. #7
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    I agree with LeBrok, mtDNA C1 might be linked to Y-DNA Q.

    The variety of C1 found in Iceland has never been found elsewhere. It doesn't match any of the American, Siberian or East Asian subclades. I think that therefore it must be another branch, one that went west from Siberia and reached Scandinavia. The men in this group would have brought haplogroup Q1a3. C is not the only mtDNA haplogroup found in Scandinavia. Haplogroup A is also present at a small but significant percentage, and there is no doubt that it is not of Native American origin, but of Siberian origin.
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    Yeah, really interesting.

  9. #9
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    Haplogroup X among Native Americans could have been brought to America by a Viking woman during the time of Leif Ericson's discovery of Vinland.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yorkie View Post
    Maybe another alternative explanation is that the Mtdna belongs to the Icelandic musician, Bjork. She is certainly unique...
    Is she? Where does it say she's that haplogroup?

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