Distribution of the four founding lineage haplotypes in native Americans suggests a single wave of migration for the New World

Authors

  • D. Andrew Merriwether,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Human Genetics, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15261
    • Department Human Genetics, University of Pittsburgh, 130 DeSoto Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15261
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Francisco Rothhammer,

    1. Department of Cell Biology and Genetics, University of Chile, Santiago, Chile
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Robert E. Ferrell

    1. Department of Human Genetics, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15261
    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

The distribution of the four founding lineage haplogroups in Native Americans from North, Central, and South America shows a north to south increase in the frequency of lineage B and a North to South decrease in the frequency of lineage A. All four founding lineage haplogroups were detected in North, Central, and South America, and in Greenberg et al.'s ([1986] Curr. Anthropol. 27:477–497) three major linguistic groups (Amerind, NaDene, and Eskaleut), with all four haplogroups often found within a single population. Lineage A was the most common lineage in North America, regardless of language group. This overall distribution is most parsimonious with a single wave of migration into the New World which included multiple variants of all four founding lineage types. Torroni et al.'s ([1993a] Am. J. Hum. Genet. 53:563–590) report that lineage B has a more recent divergence time than theother three lineages can best be explained by multiple variants of lineagesA, C, and D, and fewer variants of lineage B entering the New World. Alternatively, there could have been multiple waves of migration from a single parent population in Asia/Siberia which repeatedly reintroduced the same lineages to the New World. © 1995 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

Ancillary