The 87th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (2018)


Session 38. Genomic Diversity in South Asia and Its Implications for the Population History of Modern Humans. Invited Podium Symposium. Chair: Theodore G. Schurr

April 13, 2018 , Texas I Add to calendar

South Asia is located in a key area of Eurasia, being situated at the juncture of West, Central and Southeast Asia.  In lying along the path to Southeast Asia and Australasia, it is central to debates about the timing and nature of modern human expansions out of Africa, including interactions and admixture with archaic hominins.  Once human populations became settled in South Asia some 50,000 years ago, the process of population diversification resulted in the emergence of a distinctive gene pool relative to other parts of the world.  Neolithic agriculture later led to increasing population density and social complexity, with major civilizations arising in the Indus Valley.  South Asia also witnessed the expansion of several major language families into the region, including Dravidian, Austroasiatic, and Indo-European, raising important questions about the possible congruence between patterns of genetic and cultural/linguistic diversity.  The observed social stratification in the region further raises important questions about the origin of the caste system in the region and the degree to which it has shaped genetic diversity in India/South Asia.  Similar questions concern the degree to which oral history, cultural identity, and biological diversity reveal parallel stories of ancestry.  Given all of these details relating to its complicated history, South Asia may serve as a model for understanding the process of human genomic evolution, the population dynamics and demography of local ethnic groups, and the influences of culture, language and social organization on biological diversity in human groups.  The papers in this session provide new perspectives on these questions based on research with populations living throughout this region, using a variety of different analytical tools to interrogate this complex history, including genomics, archeology, linguistics, cultural anthropology, and ethnohistory.

2:30 Add to calendar Archaeological Perspectives on Population History and Social Diversity in South Asia. Mark Lycett.
2:45 Add to calendar Reconstructing the Population History of South Asia. Priya Moorjani, Nathan Nakatsuka, Nick Patterson, Lalji Singh, Kumarasamy Thangaraj, David Reich.
3:00 Add to calendar Genomic reconstruction of the history of extant populations of India. Partha P. Majumder.
3:15 Add to calendar A comparison of worldwide phonemic and genetic variation in populations in Asia. Alexandra Surowiec, Sohini Ramachandran, Marcus W. Feldman, Nicole Creanza.
3:30 Add to calendar The East Asian linguistic phylum: A reconstruction based on language and genes. George van Driem.
3:45 Add to calendar Genetic Footprints of Social Stratification and Codified Caste-Clan System in India. GaneshPrasad ArunKumar, Arun Vs, Syama A, Kavitha Vj, Ramasamy Pitchappan.
4:00 Add to calendar Is there evidence of a medieval intrusion of Pathans into the Vale of Peshawar, Pakistan? A dental morphology approach. Brian E. Hemphill, Inam Ullah, Muhammad Tariq, Muhammad Zubair, Nazia Saadiq, Habib Ahmad.
4:15 Add to calendar Ethnohistory, Social Organization and Genetic Diversity in Northwest Pakistan. Theodore G. Schurr, Muhammad Tariq, Habib Ahmad.
4:30 Add to calendar The regional variation of the Indian specific mitochondrial DNA haplogroups U2a, U2b, U2c; and the spread of western Eurasian ancestry. Malliya Gounder Palanichamy.
4:45 Add to calendar Migration, admixture and assimilation: case of Jewish and Parsi populations in India. Gyaneshwer Chaubey.
5:00 Add to calendar Adding a piece to the jigsaw puzzle: Skin pigmentation genetics of South Asia. Chandana Basu.
5:15 Discussant: Sumit Guha
5:30 Discussant: Connie Mulligan
5:45 Discussion
Add to calendar Withdrawn. Archaeological Perspectives on the Population History of Modern Humans in India. Shanti Pappu, Kumar Akhilesh.
Add to calendar Withdrawn. Caste and Gender in South Asian History, circa 1450 to 1950. Ramya Sreenivasan.