The 84th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists (2015)


Genome-wide data from ancient Peruvian highlanders and the Population History of South America

LARS FEHREN-SCHMITZ1, PONTUS SKOGLUND2, BASTIEN LLAMAS3, SUSANNE LINDAUER4, ELSA TOMASTO5, SUSAN KUZMINSKY1, NADIN ROHLAND2, SUSANNE NORDENFELT2, SWAPAN MALLICK2, ALAN COOPER3, NICK PATTERSON2,6, WOLFGANG HAAK3 and DAVID REICH2,6,7.

1Department of Anthropology, UC Santa Cruz, 2Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School, 3Australian Centre for Ancient DNA, University of Adelaide, 4Curt-Engelhorn-Center for Archaeometry, 5Departmento de Humanidades, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, 6Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, 7Howard Hughes Medical Institute

March 26, 2015 2:00, Lindbergh Add to calendar

Despite recent advances in archaeology and population genetics, the number of human dispersals into South America and the routes these settlers took throughout the continent remains subject to controversy. The analysis of DNA from ancient human remains has proven to be an efficient tool to get insights into such ancient population dynamic processes. However, ancient DNA research in South America so far has been mostly restricted to the analysis of the mitochondrial control region and samples 5000 years old and younger. While these studies have increased our understanding of the pre-Columbian population history, inferences have been restricted to female population dynamics and have not allowed us to address relevant aspects like admixture and selection properly. Here, we present genome wide data from pre-Columbian Central Andean individuals from various archaeological sites dating from 7000 BC to 1100 AD. Ancient DNA genomic libraries were analyzed employing both shotgun sequencing and targeted hybridization capture approaches. We compare this data with published genome-wide data from ancient and modern Native American populations and reconcile our results with craniometric studies. Our results show a striking genetic continuity in the Andes over at least 8000 years despite observed changes in cranio-morphological variability. Additionally, our observations support the hypothesis of a single-wave scenario, in which the early and later populations of pre-Columbian South America derived primarily from a single source population.

This research is funded by the Harvard Medical School, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, UC Santa Cruz, and the Australian Research Council