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Evidence of Ancient DNA Reveals the First European Lineage in Iron Age Central China

C. Z. Xie, C. X. Li, Y. Q. Cui, Q. C. Zhang, Y. Q. Fu, H. Zhu and H. Zhou
Proceedings: Biological Sciences
Vol. 274, No. 1618 (Jul. 7, 2007), pp. 1597-1601
Published by: Royal Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25249219
Page Count: 5
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Evidence of Ancient DNA Reveals the First European Lineage in Iron Age Central China
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Abstract

Various studies on ancient DNA have attempted to reconstruct population movement in Asia, with much interest focused on determining the arrival of European lineages in ancient East Asia. Here, we discuss our analysis of the mitochondrial DNA of human remains excavated from the Yu Hong tomb in Taiyuan, China, dated 1400 years ago. The burial style of this tomb is characteristic of Central Asia at that time. Our analysis shows that Yu Hong belonged to the haplogroup U5, one of the oldest western Eurasian-specific haplogroups, while his wife can be classified as haplogroup G, the type prevalent in East Asia. Our findings show that this man with European lineage arrived in Taiyuan approximately 1400 years ago, and most probably married a local woman. Haplogroup U5 was the first west Eurasian-specific lineage to be found in the central part of ancient China, and Taiyuan may be the easternmost location of the discovered remains of European lineage in ancient China.

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