Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Native Americans Had Single Ancestral Source

An international team of scientists has concluded that Native Americans derived from a single ancestral population.

“Our work provides strong evidence that, in general, Native Americans are more closely related to each other than to any other existing Asian populations, except those that live at the very edge of the Bering Strait,” said Kari Britt Schroeder, a lecturer at the University of California, Davis, and the first author on the paper describing the study.

“While earlier studies have already supported this conclusion, what’s different about our work is that it provides the first solid data that simply cannot be reconciled with multiple ancestral populations,” said Schroeder.

For years various theories had been argued regarding whether ancestors of Native Americans emigrated to the New World in one wave or successive waves, or from one ancestral Asian population or a number of different populations. The new findings are from painstakingly comparing DNA samples from people in dozens of modern-day Native American and Eurasian groups.

Click here for the UC Davis article.

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