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Thread: 6.5 ka Levantine chalcolithic DNA

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    Just to put things in perspective, one of the 30'000 years old Kostenki had some genes for Red Hairs, as one woman from Iberomaurusian. The difference in time frame and in geography is pretty huge, and they probably had a common denominator. If we apply the same for Blue Eyes, it's pretty likely that Blue Eyed individuals were already leaving in all Western Eurasia in the Neolithic times and that they lost it at different place because of natural selection. Now, one thing to take in mind is, why is Blue Eyes positively selected in Cold Countries ( over the 45° parallel north ) and negatively South of it. The only explication is that, North, the populations might have more % of it to be positively selected but south ( the Levante ) constent melting with other populations without the genes, make it really recessive. This make more sense than positively selected because of climate variations. So taking that, we might assume that Blue Eyed people were more common north of the 45° parallel than south of it.

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    3 out of 3 members found this post helpful.
    Halfalp,
    - more than a mutation produced fair eyes and red hairs - for red hairs it seems the countries where they are found today at high %'s are the ones which cumulated at least three of these mutations: uneasy to explain by the number of mutations because if a pop with "mute1" at 20% cross with a pop with "mute2" at 20% too, the final result will be 20% of total mutations, not 40%! But what is clear is that at first sight there is no unique ethnic or geographic origin for these mutations; we can only imagine hazard or natural selection to explain the today differences -
    - it's admitted that a rare mutation (in %) in a pop will be exposed to more risk of disparition. That said I think that over 10%, this mutation will not disappear, if the pop is big enough (mathematicians could have their word here).
    - but I red in a study about red hairs, freckles, light skin, skin moles and blue eyes among European Australians that some blue eye mutation seems linked with fair hair and lightER skin (lighter than the already roughly light skin of basic modern Europoids): it could be that a natural selection on skin could act to on blue eyes in these cases.
    But this aspect in its details concerns more anthropologic threads than this very one, even if this surprisingly high % of light eyes in Levant could have some historic implications.

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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    the Hensbacka group were successors of the Ahrensburg reindeer hunters who became seal hunters and fishers and moved up north along the fjords of Norway reaching the North Cape
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahrens...ensbacka_group
    in North Cape they mixed with EHG from Karelia, this mixture formed the SHG
    they were I2, but not darkhaired and darkskinned any more, they were blond and pale skinned,
    but back in southern Scandinavia and northern Poland their DNA got diluted with more darkhaired and darkskinned WHG
    their story is told in the Günther 2017 paper : http://journals.plos.org/plosbiology...l.pbio.2003703
    It wasn't a clean "sweep" for the de-pigmentation genes yet, however. If you look back at the Hofmanova et al chart you can see that there was still variation. Perhaps because they were relatively recently admixed?

    As to the Villabruna group, I don't think there's clear evidence yet whether they were originally in southeastern Europe or Anatolia. The Reich group seems to be on the fence about it. Or maybe they were related groups.

    The earlier paper on the emergence of blue eyes places it somewhere around the Caucasus. That's probably off, given that the CHG were darker and J1 and J2 probably brought some of the darker alleles to the Levant, but somewhere around Anatolia makes sense to me. That might put it in the people who moved into Europe long before the Neolithic.

    For the blue eye snp the whole thing is complicated by the fact that there's no clear "advantage" for selection to operate upon. Of course, there may be something in the background haplotype which is advantageous in certain situations having nothing to do with iris pigmentation per se. There's also sexual selection. You never know what traits are going to "appeal" to certain groups. In some African groups they killed albinos. In other areas perhaps they thought blue eyes were "godly" given it's the color of the sky.

    Blonde hair too has no clear "advantage" environmentally in cold climates, otherwise we wouldn't have Solomon Islanders who look like this.


    It would be interesting to know if the same snp is involved or if it's congruent evolution. At any rate it brings into doubt in my mind that blonde hair results from a combination of snps.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MOESAN View Post
    Halfalp,
    - more than a mutation produced fair eyes and red hairs - for red hairs it seems the countries where they are found today at high %'s are the ones which cumulated at least three of these mutations: uneasy to explain by the number of mutations because if a pop with "mute1" at 20% cross with a pop with "mute2" at 20% too, the final result will be 20% of total mutations, not 40%! But what is clear is that at first sight there is no unique ethnic or geographic origin for these mutations; we can only imagine hazard or natural selection to explain the today differences -
    - it's admitted that a rare mutation (in %) in a pop will be exposed to more risk of disparition. That said I think that over 10%, this mutation will not disappear, if the pop is big enough (mathematicians could have their word here).
    - but I red in a study about red hairs, freckles, light skin, skin moles and blue eyes among European Australians that some blue eye mutation seems linked with fair hair and lightER skin (lighter than the already roughly light skin of basic modern Europoids): it could be that a natural selection on skin could act to on blue eyes in these cases.
    But this aspect in its details concerns more anthropologic threads than this very one, even if this surprisingly high % of light eyes in Levant could have some historic implications.
    I dont really believe into Multiregional Hypothesis. For exemple whatever the numbers of genes or mutations applied in a characteristic, i'm pretty sure at some point it evolved in a related group. All seeds coming from the same place of some sort. We have more and more DNA and Samples, from Sapiens but also from Neanderthals and Denisovans, one day maybe we gonna have a blue eyed denisovan individual and that gonna ****** up everything we believed. About those Levantine, there is obviously some historical implications into their phenotypical characteristics, but the source pop can be pretty hard to found, but we can say something for sure WHG - SHG - EHG - Anatolian_Nhl - Natufians - Levante_Chl and CHG all have a common ancestor at some point and probably have constant gene flow from each other through indirect or direct link. Fair Features are found in all those genetic cluster at some point wich can only be explain by a common ancestor or constant gene flow from each other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    It wasn't a clean "sweep" for the de-pigmentation genes yet, however. If you look back at the Hofmanova et al chart you can see that there was still variation. Perhaps because they were relatively recently admixed?

    As to the Villabruna group, I don't think there's clear evidence yet whether they were originally in southeastern Europe or Anatolia. The Reich group seems to be on the fence about it. Or maybe they were related groups.

    The earlier paper on the emergence of blue eyes places it somewhere around the Caucasus. That's probably off, given that the CHG were darker and J1 and J2 probably brought some of the darker alleles to the Levant, but somewhere around Anatolia makes sense to me. That might put it in the people who moved into Europe long before the Neolithic.

    For the blue eye snp the whole thing is complicated by the fact that there's no clear "advantage" for selection to operate upon. Of course, there may be something in the background haplotype which is advantageous in certain situations having nothing to do with iris pigmentation per se. There's also sexual selection. You never know what traits are going to "appeal" to certain groups. In some African groups they killed albinos. In other areas perhaps they thought blue eyes were "godly" given it's the color of the sky.

    Blonde hair too has no clear "advantage" environmentally in cold climates, otherwise we wouldn't have Solomon Islanders who look like this.


    It would be interesting to know if the same snp is involved or if it's congruent evolution. At any rate it brings into doubt in my mind that blonde hair results from a combination of snps.
    It's extremely likely blondism is from sexual selection during periods where the gene pool is extremely small (in Northern Europe, something like bad weather and temperatures leading to sustained extremely low populations). Same for blue eyes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    It wasn't a clean "sweep" for the de-pigmentation genes yet, however. If you look back at the Hofmanova et al chart you can see that there was still variation. Perhaps because they were relatively recently admixed?
    As to the Villabruna group, I don't think there's clear evidence yet whether they were originally in southeastern Europe or Anatolia. The Reich group seems to be on the fence about it. Or maybe they were related groups.
    The earlier paper on the emergence of blue eyes places it somewhere around the Caucasus. That's probably off, given that the CHG were darker and J1 and J2 probably brought some of the darker alleles to the Levant, but somewhere around Anatolia makes sense to me. That might put it in the people who moved into Europe long before the Neolithic.
    For the blue eye snp the whole thing is complicated by the fact that there's no clear "advantage" for selection to operate upon. Of course, there may be something in the background haplotype which is advantageous in certain situations having nothing to do with iris pigmentation per se. There's also sexual selection. You never know what traits are going to "appeal" to certain groups. In some African groups they killed albinos. In other areas perhaps they thought blue eyes were "godly" given it's the color of the sky.
    Blonde hair too has no clear "advantage" environmentally in cold climates, otherwise we wouldn't have Solomon Islanders who look like this.

    It would be interesting to know if the same snp is involved or if it's congruent evolution. At any rate it brings into doubt in my mind that blonde hair results from a combination of snps.
    I don't believe in sexual selection causing selective sweeps.
    Very often healthy exotic looking men or women have more appeal than locals, especially when all locals look the same.

    The fact that blond hair sometimes occurs in warm climates doesn't disprove blond hair can have advantages in cold climates.

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    our biology teacher back in school once said that he always had to turn up the light on the students microscope when a student with light eyes called him for help during microscopy class because the picture was too dark for him. and he had the theory that this was because his eyes were dark brown.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    I don't believe in sexual selection causing selective sweeps.
    Very often healthy exotic looking men or women have more appeal than locals, especially when all locals look the same.


    The fact that blond hair sometimes occurs in warm climates doesn't disprove blond hair can have advantages in cold climates.
    You're right about that.

    As for selective advantage for blonde hair and blue eyes it might be, as Ailchu alludes to, that we just don't know enough yet about the kinds of selective advantage they might offer in certain climates, or, for that matter whether it is something in the background haplotype which is under selection.

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    0 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    just a thought from empirical experience, if blue eyes and fair skin consume less proteins than brown eyes and brown skin, in regions devoid of sun the evolution will push for fair colours if it means that with less effort it's able to keep a body in good conditions.

    By the way as usual all posts tend to end with IE (Aryans) or blue eyes and fair skin... so that sometimes I think that this forum is for white supremacists... I'm just confused uh?
    "What I've seen so far after my entire career chasing Indoeuropeans is that our solutions look tissue thin and our problems still look monumental" J.P.Mallory

    "The ultimate homeland of the group [PIE] that also spread Anatolian languages is less clear." D. Reich

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    those proteins that would be gained are minimal. i doubt that this has any effect on selection. also the recessive genes often still get expressed into protein but they simpyl dont work.

    also the reason why it ended with fair skin and blue eyes is probably because this trait got the attention of the people who wrote the paper. as always those things have only the value you give them. ask yourself the question why scientist are looking at these features and not at other interesting genes.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    @Ailchu and Berun,

    I find that as a general rule it's not wise to make generalizations when one hasn't read many, if any, of the papers being discussed.

    Clearly you have not read many of these papers, including this one. To wit:

    "We leveraged our data to examine the change in frequency of SNP alleles known to be related to metabolism, pigmentation, disease susceptibility, immunity, and inflammation in the Levant_ChL population, considered in relation to allele frequencies in the Levant_N, Levant_BA_North, Levant_BA_South, Anatolia_N and Iran_ChL populations and present-day pools of African (AFR), East Asian (EAS), and European (EUR) ancestry in the 1000 Genomes Project Phase 3 dataset39 (Supplementary Data 7)."

    You might also want to take a look at Mathiesen et al, for example, which looks at any number of traits under selection. Lactase tolerance and selection on the FADS gene are merely two examples.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4918750/

    It's true, of course, that, being human, we're interested to know what these various groups of people looked like. There's also the fact that for something like lactase tolerance and many other traits, the selective advantage is apparent. For pigmentation, everything is more obscure.

    Personally, much of what I find myself doing is combatting Nordicists spouting fantasy or deliberate misinformation on this topic in case you haven't noticed.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by O Neill View Post
    So this 50% at 7 ka, In the levent seems to have dropped to 0% after about 3 ka.
    Is that correct ? Would you expect then that we might find Similar for greece and turkey ?

    That's troy in turkey dead and buried then, the story was imported to greece from somewhere were blonde people still lived in 1200 bc.
    The ~49% percentage is for blue eyes, not blonde hair. It were the decidedly Indo-European and European Mycenaean Greeks that destroyed Troy on their own hands, so it's unlikely the West Asians by then were much more light-haired and light-eyed than the Europeans. There was a huge gap of more than 2000 years between these Chalcolithic Levant samples and 1200 BC, and the Bronze Age Anatolian and Levantine DNA are not significantly blonde nor light-eyed.

    Besides, you're wrong when you assume a 0% percentage for light eyes in West Asia. Though a minority, a decidedly non-negligible proportion of people in modern Turkey, North Syria, Lebanon and North Iraq have light eyes and even, though a smaller minority, blonde hair. The percentage of light eyes (blue, green, grey etc.) is usually in the range of 10% to 20% and at the very least 5%-10%, not near 0% at all.

    Finally, you guys just cannot presume that the AVERAGE proportin of blue eyes in the Chalcolithic Levant was as high as the ~49% found among people living in one specific location, around Peqi'in Cave. That higher percentage could have been found in one specific community, but not elsewhere in the region. The scholars themselves indicate that when they point out that the individuals they analyzed had a very strong genetic homogeneity, which suggests a common recent origin (so we may be dealing with the result of earlier founder effects there), and when they also posit that the BA Levant_South sample probably also derives part of their ancestry from a Chalcolithic Levant source, but one that hadn't been affected by the Anatolian_Neolithic expansion.


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    So i know talking about prehistoric climate is not very relevant, but what's interesting is that actual Peki'in Cave is located in Galilee, a place with high rainfalls and a certain temperate and cold mountainous climate in comparison of the more Mediterraenean Climate in surrounding regions. Wonder if such climate could have play a role in fair features selection, but as i said i tend to not believe that climate is that relevant.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    “Wouldn't T1a1a in this period likely be males from Anatolia or Europe?”

    “26 % Anatolia N, blue eyes and copper metallurgie
    could there be some connection with Vinca?“


    How about the Varna culture? Haplogroup T has been found in chalcolithic Bulgaria, including in the elite male burial at the Varna cemetery, the richest grave anywhere in the world in that period. The Varna culture seems to have invented gold metallurgy, and it was certainly the first major gold-working centre in the world. They also used the lost-wax technique. Around the time that these blue-eyed people arrived in Israel from the north, gold metallurgy and the lost-wax technique also appeared there. Varna and Israel were apparently the only places doing anything equivalent at the time.

    These people might also have gone into Egypt, as blue-eyed figurines then appear in the Naqada culture, one of which is made from gold. Then of course there are the blue-eyed statues from the Old Kingdom period.

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    Why do people on this site find blue eyes so surprising? Didn't the ancient Sumerians portray their people with fair skin and blue eyes?

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    0 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Ancient Egyptians also portrayed their earlier dynasty people with blue eyes. Seeing ancient Egyptians were mostly Middle Eastern in origin, its likely the same blue eyed fair skin people migrated from Israel into Egypt:

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    I think the reason for this was mainly that lapis lazuli held some type of cultic significance for early Middle Easterners. Blue eyes probably weren't common by the time the early civilizations emerged.

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    Quote Originally Posted by markod View Post
    I think the reason for this was mainly that lapis lazuli held some type of cultic significance for early Middle Easterners. Blue eyes probably weren't common by the time the early civilizations emerged.
    We kind of have the idea that blue eyes in Europe were intensively research and sexually selected. If they were common in Middle-East i dont understand why this process would not be the same? Especially looking at those statues. But, prehistoric Middle-East is a little weird. We have fair skinned Natufians and fair skinned and blue eyed Chalcolithic people. Semitic peoples clearly seems to came from Caucasus / South Caucasus, at least in term of their y-dna lineages, a place were fair skinned and maybe blue eyed people were highly present and Anatolia was also source of fair skinned people, maybe even with blonde hairs and blue eyes. Conclusion, did Middle-East at some point was replaced by Iranian or African ( maybe North African ) people that weren't that fair? I have hard time to believe those fair traits were replaced by themselves because of latitudes.

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    These snps are highly susceptible to selection. It's the same reason why Horners are so dark skinned despite being sometimes close to 40% West Eurasian, and why SLC24A5 swept to reasonably high levels in the San in the last 2000 years. (They live in a part of Africa that gets less of the sun's rays than people like Nigerians or the Horn, which are closer to the equator.)

    I know some Europeans find this hard to accept, but it is what it is.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by halfalp View Post
    We kind of have the idea that blue eyes in Europe were intensively research and sexually selected. If they were common in Middle-East i dont understand why this process would not be the same? Especially looking at those statues. But, prehistoric Middle-East is a little weird. We have fair skinned Natufians and fair skinned and blue eyed Chalcolithic people. Semitic peoples clearly seems to came from Caucasus / South Caucasus, at least in term of their y-dna lineages, a place were fair skinned and maybe blue eyed people were highly present and Anatolia was also source of fair skinned people, maybe even with blonde hairs and blue eyes. Conclusion, did Middle-East at some point was replaced by Iranian or African ( maybe North African ) people that weren't that fair? I have hard time to believe those fair traits were replaced by themselves because of latitudes.
    Not all the middle-east is or was semetic, one needs to be more precise, apart from african areas, the semetic areas is the arabian peninsula and the levant and the levant became semetic after the Chalcolithic period.
    Anatolia, south caucasus and mostly everything north of the zargos mountains was not semetic
    proto-semetic ( apart from the horn area of africa ) was only southern arabian peninsula .
    .
    problem is that the term middle-east covers different lands for different scholars/people
    có che un pòpoło no 'l defende pi ła só łéngua el xe prónto par èser s'ciavo

    when a people no longer dares to defend its language it is ripe for slavery.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    These snps are highly susceptible to selection. It's the same reason why Horners are so dark skinned despite being sometimes close to 40% West Eurasian, and why SLC24A5 swept to reasonably high levels in the San in the last 2000 years. (They live in a part of Africa that gets less of the sun's rays than people like Nigerians or the Horn, which are closer to the equator.)

    I know some Europeans find this hard to accept, but it is what it is.
    Are you saying that human gonna develop SLC24A5 only by being away for sun? Without any founder effect?

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfalp View Post
    Are you saying that human gonna develop SLC24A5 only by being away for sun? Without any founder effect?
    No, I'm not. The San, for example, initially got it from West Eurasian genes that trickled down from the Horn. That's how evolution works: it operates on standing variation. On the other hand, some group first had to get the mutation. My bet is somewhere in the Near East. They sure didn't have it in Western Europe (WHG).

    That mutation isn't going to make someone "European" fair, of course. That's clear. Pigmentation is the result of many genes working together. Still, it's a big driver of de-pigmentation. Look at the San compared to Nigerians.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    No, I'm not. The San, for example, initially got it from West Eurasian genes that trickled down from the Horn. That's how evolution works: it operates on standing variation. On the other hand, some group first had to get the mutation. My bet is somewhere in the Near East. They sure didn't have it in Western Europe (WHG).

    That mutation isn't going to make someone "European" fair, of course. That's clear. Pigmentation is the result of many genes working together. Still, it's a big driver of de-pigmentation. Look at the San compared to Nigerians.
    But that's what i was saying somehow. How if prehistoric Middle-Easterner seens Natufians have genes for Fair Skin and maybe even Blue Eyes and more. Why in modern times it's not anymore the case? More than just regional selection due of climate, there must have been a demic increase that makes those features disappear. Now Eastern African could have been suffer the same exemple with being at some point very " middle-eastern " and got an increase of sub-saharian gene that make them lose their features, but maybe not the genes themselves. Now we know that prehistoric Iranians were more " dark " than middle-easterners of the same time and for North Africans, we dont really know a part of Iberomaurusians call from Genetiker. But certainly that one of them, or both made Fair Features more scarce than at some point.

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    Quote Originally Posted by halfalp View Post
    But that's what i was saying somehow. How if prehistoric Middle-Easterner seens Natufians have genes for Fair Skin and maybe even Blue Eyes and more. Why in modern times it's not anymore the case? More than just regional selection due of climate, there must have been a demic increase that makes those features disappear. Now Eastern African could have been suffer the same exemple with being at some point very " middle-eastern " and got an increase of sub-saharian gene that make them lose their features, but maybe not the genes themselves. Now we know that prehistoric Iranians were more " dark " than middle-easterners of the same time and for North Africans, we dont really know a part of Iberomaurusians call from Genetiker. But certainly that one of them, or both made Fair Features more scarce than at some point.
    There's definitely additional North African ancestry in present day Middle Easterners, and Egyptians seem to be the best proxy for now. It's more pronounced in Palestinian Bedouins than in, for example, Saudis or Syrians so it probably came through the Sinai.

    I'd guess this has to do with the dispersal of Afro-Asiatic languages, but I'm not sure how big the impact was and whether it made the people less lightly pigmented. Looking at Negev Bedouins they still seem to have a different look than Syrians or settled Palestinians - overall darker and more long-headed/long-faced.

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    Quote Originally Posted by markod View Post
    There's definitely additional North African ancestry in present day Middle Easterners, and Egyptians seem to be the best proxy for now. It's more pronounced in Palestinian Bedouins than in, for example, Saudis or Syrians so it probably came through the Sinai.

    I'd guess this has to do with the dispersal of Afro-Asiatic languages, but I'm not sure how big the impact was and whether it made the people less lightly pigmented. Looking at Negev Bedouins they still seem to have a different look than Syrians or settled Palestinians - overall darker and more long-headed/long-faced.
    I can see that a lot of Neguev Bedouins have the same physical traits than Maghrebians, but that a part. I think at the time semitic languages were already in the middle-east ( 3000 BC ), we would not found any additional African ancestry in them, so i'm not sure about the fact that Afro-Asiatic languages came from Africa at this point.

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