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Keywords:

  • mitochondrial DNA;
  • phylogenetic tree;
  • haplogroup;
  • mtDNA variation;
  • human evolution

Abstract

Human mitochondrial DNA is widely used as tool in many fields including evolutionary anthropology and population history, medical genetics, genetic genealogy, and forensic science. Many applications require detailed knowledge about the phylogenetic relationship of mtDNA variants. Although the phylogenetic resolution of global human mtDNA diversity has greatly improved as a result of increasing sequencing efforts of complete mtDNA genomes, an updated overall mtDNA tree is currently not available. In order to facilitate a better use of known mtDNA variation, we have constructed an updated comprehensive phylogeny of global human mtDNA variation, based on both coding- and control region mutations. This complete mtDNA tree includes previously published as well as newly identified haplogroups, is easily navigable, will be continuously and regularly updated in the future, and is online available at http://www.phylotree.org. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.