Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/77837
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Type: Journal article
Title: Population differentiation of Southern Indian male lineages correlates with agricultural expansions predating the caste system
Author: ArunKumar, G.
Soria-Hernanz, D.
Kavitha, V.
Arun, V.
Syama, A.
Ashokan, K.
Gandhirajan, K.
Vijayakumar, K.
Narayanan, M.
Jayalakshmi, M.
Ziegle, J.
Royyuru, A.
Parida, L.
Wells, R.
Renfrew, C.
Schurr, T.
Smith, C.
Platt, D.
Pitchappan, R.
Adler, C.
et al.
Citation: PLoS One, 2012; 7(11):1-16
Publisher: Public Library of Science
Issue Date: 2012
ISSN: 1932-6203
1932-6203
Contributor: Adler, Christina Jane
Cooper, Alan
Der Sarkissian, Clio Simone Irmgard
Haak, Wolfgang
Statement of
Responsibility: 
GaneshPrasad ArunKumar, David F. Soria-Hernanz, Valampuri John Kavitha, Varatharajan Santhakumari Arun, Adhikarla Syama, Kumaran Samy Ashokan, Kavandanpatti Thangaraj Gandhirajan, Koothapuli Vijayakumar, Muthuswamy Narayanan, Mariakuttikan Jayalakshmi, Janet S. Ziegle, Ajay K. Royyuru, Laxmi Parida, R. Spencer Wells, Colin Renfrew, Theodore G. Schurr, Chris Tyler Smith, Daniel E. Platt, Ramasamy Pitchappan, The Genographic Consortium
Abstract: Previous studies that pooled Indian populations from a wide variety of geographical locations, have obtained contradictory conclusions about the processes of the establishment of the Varna caste system and its genetic impact on the origins and demographic histories of Indian populations. To further investigate these questions we took advantage that both Y chromosome and caste designation are paternally inherited, and genotyped 1,680 Y chromosomes representing 12 tribal and 19 non-tribal (caste) endogamous populations from the predominantly Dravidian-speaking Tamil Nadu state in the southernmost part of India. Tribes and castes were both characterized by an overwhelming proportion of putatively Indian autochthonous Y-chromosomal haplogroups (H-M69, F-M89, R1a1-M17, L1-M27, R2-M124, and C5-M356; 81% combined) with a shared genetic heritage dating back to the late Pleistocene (10–30 Kya), suggesting that more recent Holocene migrations from western Eurasia contributed, <20% of the male lineages. We found strong evidence for genetic structure, associated primarily with the current mode of subsistence. Coalescence analysis suggested that the social stratification was established 4–6 Kya and there was little admixture during the last 3 Kya, implying a minimal genetic impact of the Varna(caste) system from the historically-documented Brahmin migrations into the area. In contrast, the overall Y-chromosomal patterns, the time depth of population diversifications and the period of differentiation were best explained by the emergence of agricultural technology in South Asia. These results highlight the utility of detailed local genetic studies within India, without prior assumptions about the importance of Varna rank status for population grouping, to obtain new insights into the relative influences of past demographic events for the population structure of the whole of modern India.
Keywords: Genographic Consortium; Chromosomes, Human, Y; Humans; DNA, Mitochondrial; Models, Statistical; Genetics, Population; Demography; Phylogeny; Microsatellite Repeats; Haplotypes; Mutation; Geography; Social Class; Agriculture; Ethnic Groups; India; Male; Genetic Variation; Human Migration
Description: Christina J. Adler, Alan Cooper, Clio S.I. Der Sarkissian and Wolfgang Haak are contributors to the Genographic Consortium
Rights: Copyright: © 2012 ArunKumar et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
RMID: 0020127598
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0050269
Appears in Collections:Environment Institute publications
Environment Institute Leaders publications

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