Group membership, geography and shared ancestry: Genetic variation in the Basotho of Lesotho.
American Journal of Physical Anthropology 160(1):156 (2016)
The investigation of the evolution of cultural and genetic traits and how they interact represents a vibrant area of research in evolutionary genetics, whose dynamics are particularly relevant for our species. One of the key assumptions of the "gene-culture coevolution" framework is the coinheri...
Shared language, diverging genetic histories: high-resolution analysis of Y-chromosome variability in Calabrian and Sicilian Arbereshe.
European Journal of Human Genetics 24(4):600 (2016)
The relationship between genetic and linguistic diversification in human populations has been often explored to interpret some specific issues in human history. The Albanian-speaking minorities of Sicily and Southern Italy (Arbereshe) constitute an important portion of the ethnolinguistic variab...
The Greeks in the West: genetic signatures of the Hellenic colonisation in southern Italy and Sicily.
European Journal of Human Genetics 24(3):429 (2016)
Greek colonisation of South Italy and Sicily (Magna Graecia) was a defining event in European cultural history, although the demographic processes and genetic impacts involved have not been systematically investigated. Here, we combine high-resolution surveys of the variability at the uni-parent...
The Kalash Genetic Isolate? The Evidence for Recent Admixture.
The American Journal of Human Genetics 98(2):396 (2016)
Low AMY1 Gene Copy Number Is Associated with Increased Body Mass Index in Prepubertal Boys.
PLoS ONE 11(5):e0154961 (2016)
Genome-wide association studies have identified more than 60 single nucleotide polymorphisms associated with Body Mass Index (BMI). Additional genetic variants, such as copy number variations (CNV), have also been investigated in relation to BMI. Recently, the highly polymorphic CNV in the saliv...
The relationship between surname frequency and Y chromosome variation in Spain.
European Journal of Human Genetics 24(1):120 (2016)
In most societies, surnames are passed down from fathers to sons, just like the Y chromosome. It follows that, theoretically, men sharing the same surnames would also be expected to share related Y chromosomes. Previous investigations have explored such relationships, but so far, the only detail...
The Role of Recent Admixture in Forming the Contemporary West Eurasian Genomic Landscape
Current Biology 25(21):2878 (2015)
The Role of Recent Admixture in Forming the Contemporary West Eurasian Genomic Landscape.
Current Biology 25(19):2518 (2015)
Over the past few years, studies of DNA isolated from human fossils and archaeological remains have generated considerable novel insight into the history of our species. Several landmark papers have described the genomes of ancient humans across West Eurasia, demonstrating the presence of large-...
Global diversity, population stratification, and selection of human copy-number variation.
Science 349(6253):aab3761 (2015)
In order to explore the diversity and selective signatures of duplication and deletion human copy-number variants (CNVs), we sequenced 236 individuals from 125 distinct human populations. We observed that duplications exhibit fundamentally different population genetic and selective signatures th...
Genome-Wide SNP Analysis of Southern African Populations Provides New Insights into the Dispersal of Bantu-Speaking Groups.
Genome Biology and Evolution 7(9):2560 (2015)
The expansion of Bantu-speaking agropastoralist populations had a great impact on the genetic, linguistic, and cultural variation of sub-Saharan Africa. It is generally accepted that Bantu languages originated in an area around the present border between Cameroon and Nigeria approximately 5,000 ...
Exploring the relationship between lifestyles, diets and genetic adaptations in humans.
BMC Genetics 16:55 (2015)
One of the most important dietary shifts underwent by human populations began to occur in the Neolithic, during which new modes of subsistence emerged and new nutrients were introduced in diets. This change might have worked as a selective pressure over the metabolic pathways involved in the bre...
Static and moving frontiers: the genetic landscape of Southern African Bantu-speaking populations.
Molecular Biology and Evolution 32(1):29 (2015)
A consensus on Bantu-speaking populations being genetically similar has emerged in the last few years, but the demographic scenarios associated with their dispersal are still a matter of debate. The frontier model proposed by archeologists postulates different degrees of interaction among incomi...
Unravelling the hidden ancestry of American admixed populations.
Nature Communications 6:6596 (2015)
The movement of people into the Americas has brought different populations into contact, and contemporary American genomes are the product of a range of complex admixture events. Here we apply a haplotype-based ancestry identification approach to a large set of genome-wide SNP data from a variet...
Ancient human genomes suggest three ancestral populations for present-day Europeans.
Nature 513(7518):409 (2014)
We sequenced the genomes of a ∼7,000-year-old farmer from Germany and eight ∼8,000-year-old hunter-gatherers from Luxembourg and Sweden. We analysed these and other ancient genomes with 2,345 contemporary humans to show that most present-day Europeans derive from at least three highly differenti...
A global analysis of Y-chromosomal haplotype diversity for 23 STR loci.
Forensic Science International: Genetics 12:12 (2014)
In a worldwide collaborative effort, 19,630 Y-chromosomes were sampled from 129 different populations in 51 countries. These chromosomes were typed for 23 short-tandem repeat (STR) loci (DYS19, DYS389I, DYS389II, DYS390, DYS391, DYS392, DYS393, DYS385ab, DYS437, DYS438, DYS439, DYS448, DYS456, D...
A genetic atlas of human admixture history.
Science 343(6172):747 (2014)
Modern genetic data combined with appropriate statistical methods have the potential to contribute substantially to our understanding of human history. We have developed an approach that exploits the genomic structure of admixed populations to date and characterize historical mixture events at f...
Demographic histories, isolation and social factors as determinants of the genetic structure of Alpine linguistic groups.
PLoS ONE 8(12):e81704 (2013)
Great European mountain ranges have acted as barriers to gene flow for resident populations since prehistory and have offered a place for the settlement of small, and sometimes culturally diverse, communities. Therefore, the human groups that have settled in these areas are worth exploring as an...
Migration distance rather than migration rate explains genetic diversity in human patrilocal groups.
Molecular Ecology 21(20):4958 (2012)
In patrilocal groups, females preferentially move to join their mate's paternal relatives. The gender-biased gene flow generated by this cultural practice is expected to affect genetic diversity across human populations. Greater female than male migration is predicted to result in a larger decre...
Reconstructing ancient mitochondrial DNA links between Africa and Europe.
Genome Research 22(5):821 (2012)
Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) lineages of macro-haplogroup L (excluding the derived L3 branches M and N) represent the majority of the typical sub-Saharan mtDNA variability. In Europe, these mtDNAs account for <1% of the total but, when analyzed at the level of control region, they show no signals o...
The peopling of Europe and the cautionary tale of Y chromosome lineage R-M269.
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological ... 279(1730):884 (2012)
Recently, the debate on the origins of the major European Y chromosome haplogroup R1b1b2-M269 has reignited, and opinion has moved away from Palaeolithic origins to the notion of a younger Neolithic spread of these chromosomes from the Near East. Here, we address this debate by investigating fre...