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Abstract

The Uruguayan population has been considered as mainly European descent, with a negligible Native American or African contributions. Based on serological and molecular markers, recent studies demonstrate that these two populations had an important influence in the conformation of the present one. To the Northeastern region of Uruguay, a 20% Native American contribution was estimated using autosomal markers and a 62% Native American female origin based on mitochondrial markers. In this paper, we analyze four Y chromosome markers, two biallelic loci (M3 and YAP) and two microsatellites (DYS389I and DYS391), to characterize the male genetic contribution of a sample from the Northeastern city of Tacuarembó. We take different approaches to estimate the origin of male contributions to the population of Tacuarembó; Native American contribution ranges between 1.60% and 8.31%, confirming strong directional mating, which was also detected before with mitochondrial markers. Furthermore, the male population of Tacuarembó presents the characteristic of a population that suffered a bottleneck and a posterior expansion, confirmed using two microsatellite-based statistics to analyze the past population growth; patrilocality and migration could be responsible of those characteristics. Am. J. Hum. Biol. 17:801–808, 2005. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.