Ancient human genomes suggest three ancestral populations for present-day Europeans

Bibliographic Collection: 
Publication Type: Journal Article
Authors: Lazaridis, I.; Patterson, N.; Mittnik, A.; Renaud, G.; Mallick, S.; Kirsanow, K.; Sudmant, P.; Schraiber, J.; Castellano, S.; Lipson, M.; Berger, B.; Economou, C.; Bollongino, R.; Fu, Q.; Bos, K. I.; Nordenfelt, S.; Li, H.; de Filippo, C.; Prufer, K.; Sawyer, S.; Posth, C.; Haak, W.; Hallgren, F.; Fornander, E.; Rohland, N.
Year of Publication: 2014
Journal: Nature
Volume: 513
Start Page: 409
Pagination: 409-413
Date Published: 09/2014
Publication Language: eng

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 genomes1234 with 2,345 contemporary humans to show that most present-day Europeans derive from at least three highly differentiated populations: west European hunter-gatherers, who contributed ancestry to all Europeans but not to Near Easterners; ancient north Eurasians related to Upper Palaeolithic Siberians3, who contributed to both Europeans and Near Easterners; and early European farmers, who were mainly of Near Eastern origin but also harboured west European hunter-gatherer related ancestry. We model these populations’ deep relationships and show that early European farmers had ~44% ancestry from a ‘basal Eurasian’ population that split before the diversification of other non-African lineages.

DOI: 10.1038/nature13673