Open access Reconstructing the Deep Population History of Central and South America, by Posth et al. Cell (2018).
We report genome-wide ancient DNA from 49 individuals forming four parallel time transects in Belize, Brazil, the Central Andes, and the Southern Cone, each dating to at least ∼9,000 years ago. The common ancestral population radiated rapidly from just one of the two early branches that contributed to Native Americans today. We document two previously unappreciated streams of gene flow between North and South America. One affected the Central Andes by ∼4,200 years ago, while the other explains an affinity
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New paper (behind paywall) The prehistoric peopling of Southeast Asia, by McColl et al. (Science 2018) 361(6397):88-92 from a recent bioRxiv preprint.
Interesting is this apparently newly reported information including a female sample from the Ikawazu Jōmon of Japan ca. 570 BC (emphasis mine):
The two oldest samples — Hòabìnhians from Pha Faen, Laos [La368; 7950 with 7795 calendar years before the present (cal B.P.)] and Gua Cha, Malaysia (Ma911; 4415 to 4160 cal B.P.)—henceforth labeled “group 1,” cluster most closely with present-day Önge from the Andaman Islands and away from other East Asian and Southeast-Asian populations (Fig.
… Read the rest “South-East Asia samples include shared ancestry with Jōmon”
Open access Complex history of dog (Canis familiaris) origins and translocations in the Pacific revealed by ancient mitogenomes, by Creig et al., Scientific Reports (2018).
Archaeological evidence suggests that dogs were introduced to the islands of Oceania via Island Southeast Asia around 3,300 years ago, and reached the eastern islands of Polynesia by the fourteenth century AD. This dispersal is intimately tied to human expansion, but the involvement of dogs in Pacific migrations is not well understood. Our analyses of seven new complete ancient mitogenomes and five partial mtDNA sequences from archaeological dog specimens from Mainland and Island
… Read the rest “Complex history of dog origins and translocations in the Pacific revealed by ancient mitogenomes”
Open access New insights from Thailand into the maternal genetic history of Mainland Southeast Asia, by Kutanan et al. Eur. J. Hum. Genet. (2018) 26:898–911
Abstract (emphasis mine):
Tai-Kadai (TK) is one of the major language families in Mainland Southeast Asia (MSEA), with a concentration in the area of Thailand and Laos. Our previous study of 1234 mtDNA genome sequences supported a demic diffusion scenario in the spread of TK languages from southern China to Laos as well as northern and northeastern Thailand. Here we add an additional 560 mtDNA genomes from 22 groups, with a focus on the
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Review of recent papers on East Asia, quite relevant these days: Human Genetics: Busy Subway Networks in Remote Oceania? by Anders Bergström & Chris Tyler-Smith, Current Biology (2018) 28.
Interesting excerpts (emphasis mine):
Ancient DNA is transforming our understanding of the human past by forcing geneticists to confront its real complexity . Historians and archaeologists have long known that the development of human societies was complex and often haphazard, but geneticists have persistently tried to explain present-day patterns of genetic variation using simple models.
Early genetic analyses of present-day populations revealed a mix of Asian (Taiwanese) and Papuan (New
… Read the rest “Linguistic continuity despite genetic replacement in Remote Oceania”
Open access Population Size and the Rate of Language Evolution: A Test Across Indo-European, Austronesian, and Bantu Languages, by Greenhill et al. Front. Psychol (2018) 9:576.
Summary (emphasis mine):
What role does speaker population size play in shaping rates of language evolution? There has been little consensus on the expected relationship between rates and patterns of language change and speaker population size, with some predicting faster rates of change in smaller populations, and others expecting greater change in larger populations. The growth of comparative databases has allowed population size effects to be investigated across a wide range of language
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Open access preprint at bioRxiv Ancient genomes document multiple waves of migration in Southeast Asian prehistory, by Lipson, Cheronet, Mallick, et al. (2018).
Abstract (emphasis mine):
Southeast Asia is home to rich human genetic and linguistic diversity, but the details of past population movements in the region are not well known. Here, we report genome-wide ancient DNA data from thirteen Southeast Asian individuals spanning from the Neolithic period through the Iron Age (4100-1700 years ago). Early agriculturalists from Man Bac in Vietnam possessed a mixture of East Asian (southern Chinese farmer) and deeply diverged eastern Eurasian (hunter-gatherer) ancestry characteristic
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Open access preprint article at bioRxiv Ancient Genomics Reveals Four Prehistoric Migration Waves into Southeast Asia, by McColl, Racimo, Vinner, et al. (2018).
Abstract (emphasis mine):
Two distinct population models have been put forward to explain present-day human diversity in Southeast Asia. The first model proposes long-term continuity (Regional Continuity model) while the other suggests two waves of dispersal (Two Layer model). Here, we use whole-genome capture in combination with shotgun sequencing to generate 25 ancient human genome sequences from mainland and island Southeast Asia, and directly test the two competing hypotheses. We find that early genomes from Hoabinhian
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