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Thread: Genomic Steppe ancestry in skeletons from the Neolithic Single Grave Culture in Denm

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    Genomic Steppe ancestry in skeletons from the Neolithic Single Grave Culture in Denm

    The Gjerrild burial provides the largest and best-preserved assemblage of human skeletal material presently known from the Single Grave Culture (SGC) in Denmark. For generations it has been debated among archaeologists if the appearance of this archaeological complex represents a continuation of the previous Neolithic communities, or was facilitated by incoming migrants. We sampled and analysed five skeletons from the Gjerrild cist, buried over a period of c. 300 years, 2600/2500–2200 cal BCE. Despite poor DNA preservation, we managed to sequence the genome (>1X) of one individual and the partial genomes (0.007X and 0.02X) of another two individuals. Our genetic data document a female (Gjerrild 1) and two males (Gjerrild 5 + 8), harbouring typical Neolithic K2a and HV0 mtDNA haplogroups, but also a rare basal variant of the R1b1 Y-chromosomal haplogroup. Genome-wide analyses demonstrate that these people had a significant Yamnaya-derived (i.e. steppe) ancestry component and a close genetic resemblance to the Corded Ware (and related) groups that were present in large parts of Northern and Central Europe at the time. Assuming that the Gjerrild skeletons are genetically representative of the population of the SGC in broader terms, the transition from the local Neolithic Funnel Beaker Culture (TRB) to SGC is not characterized by demographic continuity. Rather, the emergence of SGC in Denmark was part of the Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age population expansion that swept across the European continent in the 3rd millennium BCE, resulting in various degrees of genetic replacement and admixture processes with previous Neolithic populations.

    source :

    page 15
    in pdf file of this paper :

    The mtDNA haplogroups of Gjerrild 8 and 5 were both determined to be from the K2a lineage whereas Gjerrild 1 was HV0. These haplogroups are part of the “Neolithic package” thatbecame common in Europe following the Neolithic transition [77] and the K2 subgroup haspreviously been observed both among subsequent CWC [78] and Bell Beakers from England[79]. This has often been interpreted as continuity in the female gene pool, suggesting that theincoming CWC-related migrants were largely males and then local females were bought in [3].Our mtDNA results from the Gjerrild grave are not inconsistent with this notion. Moreunusual is the Y-chromosome haplogroup of Gjerrild 5 determined to R1b-V1636 (R1b1a2)(Fig 3). This rare subclade of R1b has previously been observed in four Eneolithic individualsfrom the Pontic-Caspian Steppe [2, 58] as well as a Chalcolithic individual from Anatolia(Arslantepe) [59] R1b1a2 among [59]
    Last edited by kingjohn; 15-01-21 at 12:33.
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