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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Phylogeography of Y-haplogroup Q3-L275

BMC Evolutionary Biology has a decent new paper on the phylogeography of Y-haplogroup Q3-L275. It would've been a great paper a couple of years ago, but I think that nowadays papers like this should also come with a few kick ass ancient samples to help make their point, otherwise they just feel like a prelude to something else. In this case it's probably a matter of funding and logistics, because the authors appear to be aware of the pitfalls of working with modern-day data:

Haplogroup Q3-L275 results from the first known split within haplogroup Q, which occurred in the Paleolithic epoch: according to previous studies [15, 24], haplogroup Q split into the Q3-L275 and Q1’2-L472 branches around 35 ky ago. Thus the location of this split might help identify the homeland of haplogroup Q, from where it spread throughout Eurasia and the Americas. Our findings better support a West Asian or Central Asian homeland of Q3 than any other area: a higher frequency was found in West Asia and in neighboring Pakistan; and early branches were identified in West Asia, Central Asia and South Asia. Increasing the dataset of ancient DNA might in future identify additional early branches, helping to locate a possible homeland more precisely. The very few samples from present-day (Additional file 3: Table S2) or ancient [43] China do not contradict this hypothesis, as they came from the western provinces located in Central Asia or historically linked to this area. The single Portuguese sample likely reflects the origin of the carrier, rather than more general population history. Thus, Q3 was one of the Paleolithic West Eurasian haplogroups. Its West/Central Asian homeland proposed here is hypothetical, because present-day genetic patterns do not necessarily reflect ancient ones as these can be modified by the more recent demographic events.

I like this diagram. But again, it would've been even better if augmented by a sprinkling of high resolution ancient samples.

Balanovsky et al., Phylogeography of human Y-chromosome haplogroup Q3-L275 from an academic/citizen science collaboration, BMC Evolutionary Biology, 201717(Suppl 1):18, DOI: 10.1186/s12862-016-0870-2


Samuel Andrews said...

Does any know if Q3a1-Y2200 the popular Jewish form of Q? If so that might be why it'is frequent in Eastern Europe.

Annie Mouse said...

The map seems to show a long-term migration path affecting several Q subclades between coastal western India and Western Europe along the Med.

Davidski said...

Q3a1-Y2200 isn't frequent in Eastern Europe. It's frequent among Ashkenazi Jews from Eastern Europe.

You should read the paper.

Davidski said...

From the paper...

The clear phylogenetic expansion within Q3a1 (Fig. 3), the expansion date, and nearby absence of Q3a1 in non-Ashkenazi Europeans indicate that this pre-Ashkenazi population – at least those who carried Q3 – grew rapidly and was already isolated in the Early Middle Ages.

Seinundzeit said...

This is so topical, considering the discussions we've been having here (with regard to increased South Central Asian ANE affinity, "ghost" ANE populations in Central Asia, etc).

I have to agree with David though, we seriously need Upper Paleolithic/Mesolithic aDNA from Central Asia (basically, all contemporary countries with names that end in "stan", lol).

I really hope we don't have to wait too long.

Gioiello said...

@ Davidski

Jewish-Ashkenazic Q3 derives from Italy as I am saying from so long and as the paper hasn't the courage to say definetely, but Vladimir Gurianov Always puts many likes on my posts. Another victory of mine, David... begin to fear about all the rest.

André de Vasconcelos said...

The phylogenetic tree of haplogroup Q3-L275 lists one Portuguese under Q3b Y2250, it splits together with Kazakh-1. Any ideas on this? The only thing I can think of is someone being a descendent of Alani during the migration by the early 400s, or maybe someone who moved to muslim Iberia during the middle ages, but I'd expect more of this were the case. Seems very isolated and scarce anyway.

postneo said...

"The map seems to show a long-term migration path affecting several Q subclades between coastal western India and Western Europe along the Med."

Its not coastal, its quite inland along the indus and dried up sarasvati. The age of the mutation is from before the river dried. The map projections are misleading.

What is strange is that the oldest branch in green and red from 7000 BP and 5000 BP seem to show up in india/pakistan, modern yamnaya/CW and modern afanasievo.

green and red seem to high light a mountain corridor link from indus to altai on the east and caucasus to the west

Davidski said...

Y-hg Q in South Asia is from Neolithic Iran and the Bronze Age steppe. There won't be any Q in South Asian Mesolithic samples.

And cut the crap about migrations from South Asia to Europe apart from the Roma/Gypsies, because there never were any. Europeans lack Ancestral South Indian (ASI) admixture.

Gioiello said...

@ Aram

From where Q came to Italy? And when?"

Look at the map. Of course hg. Q, as hg. R, came from Central Asia and was amongst the hunter-gatherers of the Siberian corridor, but, whereas hg. R is in Western Europe from perhaps 20000 years, hg. Q3 arrived in Italy 4000 years ago (and Ashkenazim took an Italian Q3, as Einstein an Italian/Sardinain hf. E). Of course this people may have come to Italy in different times and different people.
But I demonstrated that there are in Italy also subclades of Q, like Q-M25, from at least 13000 years. It is meaningful that Vladimir Gurianov, a geneticist and an expert of hg. Q, reads my posts and frequently he puts a "like".

Rami said...

David u must smoking more crack these days.
Y dna Q cannot be from Steppe Nomads, those people are almost entirely R1a nor Neolithic Iranians. The Q has is coming from very archaic MA1 like populations living in SC Asia. Its not that hard to put 2 an 2 together

Davidski said...

Its not that hard to put 2 an 2 together.

Clearly it is for you, since we now have instances of Q on the Eneolithic/Copper Age steppe in Samara and near the Altai. What makes you think some of them weren't taken to South Asia during the Bronze Age?

No evidence yet of Q in Mesolithic or Neolithic South Asia since we have no ancient DNA from South Asia, but you won't see any Q in Mesolithic South Asian remains. Forget it.

Frank said...

Hey Davidski, I noticed you have two categories for greek samples, thessaly and central greece. How do you categorize them, all samplers from athens and greek islands go under central greece or?

Ryan said...

@Andre - Perhaps an immigrant from Goa? Or elsewhere in Portuguese India? That would seem like the most likely explanation to me.

Davidski said...


I didn't label the Greek samples. They just came like that, and I don't know what Central Greek really means.

André de Vasconcelos said...


Yes, could be that aswell, you do find Goans (or people of Goan descent) in Lisbon, in fact I've known a few of them myself. Even the PM is one.

Rob said...

I recall some late sarmatian and medieval Alans were tested by a Russian lab- they were R1a-Z93, G2 and J.

Annie Mouse said...


People did not stop moving when they got somewhere. These subclades represent different times/periods.

The migration path I am talking about could have been mainly India to Iberia (diluting along the way), Iberia to India or Iran to India and Iberia. All I am saying is that this haplogroup was sloshing back and forth along that line. If haplogroups were flowing along this line then trade likely was also, which is what I am interested in.

@post neo

Looks like the earlier path was north<->south as you suggest (neon green) but the younger ones look different.

Davidski said...

Your theories are generally not very parsimonious. Maybe work on that a little bit.

Grey said...

one of my pet theories (based on the usual jumble of mythology and what ifs) is Jews have two roots:
- the ydna E root from the Levant
- the second root from the near-steppe (either caucasus or tien shan) who moved south and hooked up in the mid-east