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Thread: Who's got the highest percentage of Neanderthal genes?

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    Default Who's got the highest percentage of Neanderthal genes?

    Some new and very interesting stuff from the Genome Project via the excellent anthropologist John Hawks which appears to be showing which of us have the most Neanderthal in us. Cogs, it would be great if you could give a view on this for those of us who are slightly Hap-Map challenged?

    In my last installment on Neandertal introgression in present-day human samples, I covered whole genome data from the 1000 Genomes Project ("Which population in the 1000 Genomes Project samples has the most Neandertal similarity?". For the next few weeks I'll be releasing more of these comparisons, made with the help of my Ph.D. student, Aaron Sams.

    Just to remind about our methods for comparing genomes, what we have done is to examine every base reported as a single nucleotide polymorphism by the 1000 Genomes Project. If the sequencing data had no errors, then this would be an account of every point mutation in the human genome. However, the data are imperfect in various ways, as I'll note below. Likewise, the Neandertal sequence data are imperfect in various ways.

    Here's one of the 1000 Genomes Project comparisons, showing the histogram for pooled European, African, and Chinese samples. In this chart, the number of shared Neandertal derived SNP alleles is the x-axis, divided into bins of around 500. The y-axis is the number of individual genomes in the sample found in each bin. So on this chart, the largest number of European genomes (nearly 120) share very approximately 645,000 derived SNP alleles with the Vindija 33.16 genome.



    I find it necessary to be very explicit about these charts, because after showing them to many people I know how easily they can be misinterpreted. It's natural to assume that they are bar charts, where higher y values mean more Neandertal. But with more than 2000 genomes to compare, a bar chart is really just noise. These histograms are much like bell curves, in which the shape of the distribution on the y-axis indicates the dispersion within the population of Neandertal shared alleles.

    Percentages

    Everyone is excited to find out what percentage of Neandertal ancestry people have. I'm hesitant to report percentages, because I think they are misleading on these data. There is some filtering hiding beneath the data. In particular SNP alleles that are found only in one individual ("singletons") are likely to be undersampled by the project's sequence analysis. Because gene variants that have introgressed from Neandertal populations tend to be rare in present-day samples, when we miss some rare alleles, this tends to reduce our estimate of Neandertal similarity.

    This bias in resequencing data should affect populations roughly in proportion to their Neandertal ancestry. Our comparisons of different populations are therefore likely to give the right order of Neandertal ancestry (e.g., Europeans more than Asians) but may underestimate the total fraction of ancestry by some amount. We are counting human SNP variants and not every base pair in the Neandertal genome data, so the effect of sequencing error in the Neandertals will be minimal, but nevertheless present in a small fraction of comparisons. These errors should be randomly distributed with respect to human population differences, but they also add noise that should decrease the accuracy of percentage estimates.

    For another thing, we don't know where the zero point may be. Europeans have around 3 percent more than Yoruba; Yoruba (as I showed in the last post) have around a half percent more Neandertal similarity than Luhya in the 1000 Genomes Project sample. The Luhya are almost certainly not minimal for living people, in fact I would put some money against it. Since some Neandertal alleles have proceeded right up to high frequencies outside Africa, there has been ample opportunity during the last 30,000 years or more for other alleles to have spread into Africa

    Our conservative approach is to rely on comparisons of large samples of people, ideally hundreds, and to trust a comparison only when it achieves statistical significance in these samples. That still allows us to detect very slight excesses of Neandertal ancestry in some populations, because the data from hundreds of individuals is very strong evidence. But the overlap among populations is sometimes very extensive even if their means differ significantly.

    Incomplete lineage sorting (ILS) is one pattern by which living people share alleles with Neandertals. ILS should be equally distributed among populations today, under the assumption that Neandertals and ancestral Africans stem from a single unstructured population. Obviously, Europeans and Asians share more derived SNP alleles with Neandertals than do Africans today, so we can strongly reject the hypothesis of isolation between African and Neandertal populations.

    Given that, three patterns of evolution could have caused some populations to share more derived alleles with Neandertals than others.

    1. Population structure in the ancestors of Africans and Neandertals may have caused some populations to share more ILS with Neandertals than others.
    2. Continued gene flow between Neandertals and Africans could have spread Neandertal alleles into Africa and vice-versa.
    3. Recent introgression from Neandertal populations into the ancestors of today's populations may have transferred new Neandertal alleles into recent humans.

    These three processes actually overlap with each other. Very likely all three of them happened -- although to date, the descriptions of Neandertal genome data have accentuated the last and argued that the first two are relatively less important [1] [2]. A "new" allele in a Neandertal may actually have originated from a mutation more than a half million years ago, have been lost within ancient Africans, and transferred into today's Europeans when they encountered and mixed with Neandertals. We cannot tell these processes apart from the standpoint of any single SNP allele. Only by comparing many SNP alleles across many populations can we sort out their relative importance.

    To this end, we have been comparing populations with each other and ancient Neandertals in many different ways. The 1000 Genomes Project has continued to sample and resequence many of the same samples that were initially amassed for the International HapMap Project. The HapMap was a project based on genotyping individuals with microarray technology. Genotypes are just as informative in many cases as whole-genome sequences. If you already know which genetic variations you want to examine, a microarray can save a substantial amount of wasted effort.

    With Neandertal comparisons, we don't start out knowing in advance which genotypes will be useful. For this reason, genotyping data yields a potential bias when comparing to Neandertal or other human genomes. The microarray was designed to include genotypes that were already known to vary in some human population.

    With the HapMap, this bias tends to overrepresent the genetic variations in the initial HapMap samples -- generally, Utah residents of northern European descent, ethnic Yoruba people from Nigeria, ethnic Han Chinese from Beijing, and Japanese people from Tokyo. If these samples share some common derived SNP alleles with Neandertals, they will very likely be represented in the genotyping array. But very rare alleles won't be represented. And alleles that are uniquely in other populations -- such as East Africans or South Asians -- may not be represented, either. The bias is called "ascertainment bias" because it comes from the "ascertainment" of SNPs, or their initial discovery in some populations but not others.

    It is possible now to find sets of SNP markers that have been statistically chosen to minimize ascertainment biases. The filters used in such comparisons are complex, and in some cases actually rely on the Neandertal genotype, so I haven't used them here. For our first paper we have focused on the whole-genome sequence comparisons, but here I'll give the same comparisons on some HapMap samples to show approximately where they fit. I will focus here on raw comparisons instead of standardizing them in terms of the predictive ability of informative SNPs on whole genome data. Finding the most informative SNPs is part of the process of sorting introgression from earlier population structure, and is rather more complex; I prefer to start with something very simple and visually easy to interpret.

    South Asia

    One interesting place is India. The HapMap includes a sample of Indian-Americans with origins in Gujarat, in western India. Here's a plot comparing the Gujarat ancestry (GIH) sample with the CEU and LWK samples:


    The GIH sample has substantially fewer shared Neandertal derived SNP alleles than the CEU sample. What may be more curious is that the GIH sample also has fewer than East Asians on average. The JPT+CHB samples, for example, exceed the GIH mean by around 100 derived SNPs.


    On a mean of more than 43,000, 100 is around a fourth of a percent, so it's not much -- and it may fall within the amount expected from ascertainment bias. It will be much more enlightening to have GIH whole genome data. In the meantime, we can probably confirm the picture from sequence data that indicates Europeans today have the highest degree of Neandertal ancestry.

    East Africa

    The situation within Africa is potentially very complex also. From sequence data, we were able to show that Yoruba (YRI) and Luhya (LWK) population samples have different numbers of shared derived Neandertal SNP alleles. The YRI sample in West Africa has significantly more Neandertal similarity than the LWK sample in East Africa. We speculate that this relation may reflect trans-Saharan gene flow, which has continued throughout history and prehistory.

    Is this a question of east versus west in Africa? That might seem unlikely considering the extent of population movements into northeastern Africa and continued trade along the East African coast throughout historic time.
    The HapMap includes a sample of ethnic Maasai people from Kenya, which allows us to provide another perspective on African variation. Here is the chart, compared to LWK and CEU:


    The Maasai have substantially more Neandertal similarity than Luhya, despite their present geographic proximity. In fact, the mean amount of Neandertal similarity in the Maasai is approximately the same as that in the ASW sample, which is composed of African-American ancestry people in the Southwest U.S.:



    You see immediately more dispersion in the African-American ancestry sample, because the mixture between African and European ancestors is more variable and much more recent than the events that gave rise to the Neandertal ancestry of Maasai people.

    We speculate that there may have been a substantial amount of interaction in northeast Africa. Obviously this has been true in historic times, but the Maasai suggest that it may go back long before the origins of the present ethnic groups and their movements into this area. The present heterogeneity of Neandertal similarity in these populations suggests a really complex population history. Some of the present Neandertal similarity may derive from ILS within the ancient African population.

    Probing assumptions

    Of course my lab is not the only one presently engaged in comparing the archaic human genomes with recent populations. One of the reasons why we're pursuing a more open science strategy in our reporting is that different groups using different methodologies ought to converge on the same population history.

    Where we see different results, it's often an indication that the alternative approaches involve substantially different assumptions about the way ancient humans interacted. As we've probed more deeply into the data, we have confronted the reality that long-term population mixture between Neandertal and African ancestral populations is extremely difficult to rule out.

    Assuming that long-term interactions were impossible because Neandertals and Africans were completely isolated will probably lead to erroneous results. That makes it harder for us to clearly identify gene variants that came from Neandertals within the last hundred thousand years, as opposed to those shared with Neandertals via more ancient gene flow.

    What makes long-term interactions seem more likely is that some of the Neandertal genomes seem to be more closely related to living people than others.

    More on that in my next installment.

    From John Hawks' Web Blog
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    Some new and very interesting stuff from the Genome Project via the excellent anthropologist John Hawks which appears to be showing which of us have the most Neanderthal in us. Cogs, it would be great if you could give a view on this for those of us who are slightly Hap-Map challenged?
    Alright, I will do my best to provide a straightforward explanation to what is essentially an incredibly complex project with almost an infinite number of variables to consider. Not an easy task for this particular latter-day Neanderthal hybrid.

    First of all, John Hawks, a well known professor of anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (his excellent anthropology site is here: http://johnhawks.net/weblog), is attempting to compare which populations have the closest affinity to Neanderthals.

    In order to makes his comparisons, Hawks is using data from the Vindija 33.16 Neanderthal Mitochondrial Genome that was sequenced by Richard Green, Svante Paabo et al in 2008. See: http://anthropology.net/2008/08/07/t...unced-in-cell/. The above Neanderthal genome results are compared to Hap-Maps (Haplogroup Maps) as provided by the '1000 Genomes Project' to determine how similar the various populations' SNPs (Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms) are to Neanderthal SNPs.

    In other words, Neanderthals were isolated from other archaic populations for many eons and as a result, many SNP changes (mutations) occurred between archaic groups. Therefore, the group with the fewest differences in SNPs was doing the most hanky panky and having children (hybrids) to tell about it.




    Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (Mutation Example)



    The '1000 Genomes Project' was established to sequence complete human genomes. Ish, as you may recall, I was invited to participate in the project but decided not to do so - thereby, not driving them batty with my weird genetics. The project includes the following groupings so far:

    1. Europeans (CEU)
    2. Chinese (CHB)
    3. Japanese (JPT)
    4. Gujarat (GIH)
    5. Africans Supergroup
    6. Luhyah (LWK)
    7. Maasai (MKK)
    8. Yoruba (YRI)
    9. African-American (ASW)

    All that can be done at the present time is to compare the relative closeness of different groups to Neanderthal SNPs. The idea that everyone with ancestry outside of Africa has from 1-4% Neanderthal genetic material is simply an estimate of the whole and not an exact science since they're somewhat 'shooting at a moving target'.

    Hawks is not using percentages between different groups since those percentages can be misleading. However, the data still indicates which groups are genetically closer to Neanderthals than other groups. So far, as expected, Europeans appear to have the highest affinity (estimated as high as a 4% contribution), but there are a few surprises.

    Americans with ancestry from Gujarit (GIH) from West India appear to have less affinity with Neanderthals than East Asians. Also, there appears to be some gene flow between Neanderthals and Africans that was not hitherto found, especially among the Maasai (MKK) and African-Americans (ASW) living in the Southwest U.S. The small amount of gene flow apparent (estimated by Hawks at 1/4%) could be due to latter-day population movements and intergroup breeding, random bias, or something else.

    The puzzling conclusion so far is that the Chinese and Japanese appear to be genetically closer to Neanderthals than West Indians. Not sure what that means other than ... maybe the Denisovans are to blame for that??!!??

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    That's an excellent summary of the results. Thank you!

    I found the East Asia bit the most interesting, as (please correct me if I'm wrong) we only hear about Neanderthals having been in Europe, and not in Asia?
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    There is a Neanderthal burial site at Teshik-Tash in Uzbekistan. On the evidence, this is the furthest east they went, but since finds are incredibly few and far between, maybe they got further. Moreover, and this is pure speculation, if any of these Neanderthal populations bred with modern humans - who were migrating through the territory - then there is no reason why their genetic imprint could not have travelled further.

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    Moreover, and this is pure speculation, if any of these Neanderthal populations bred with modern humans - who were migrating through the territory - then there is no reason why their genetic imprint could not have travelled further.
    That is exactly the explanation for Neanderthal genetics showing up in Native American populations. However, some renegades believe that Neanderthals or their hybrids made it all the way to the Americas. See: http://www.dnaconsultants.com/_blog/...ls_in_America/.

    There are many morphological examples of extremely archaic, flat-headed skulls that were recovered in the Americas prior to the 19th Century, but Ales Hrdlcka of the Smithsonian Museum would not tolerate the existence of humans in the Americas prior to 4-6,000 years earlier at the time. As time permits, I will post some of the finds from that era ... they sure don't look modern!

    For those who enjoy speculating with way out stuff, there is Austin Whittall's site where he promotes the entry of Neanderthals into the Americas. Makes for interesting reading on a cold and windy night: http://patagoniamonsters.blogspot.co...rica-part.html.


    Whittall's Revised Neanderthal Dispersion

    Although Allen's hypothesis is not taken seriously in scientific circles there is the problem of archaic tools being found all over the Americas with no explanation for who created them ... my best guess is Asian H. erectus or H. heidelbergensis. Just when we think we know everything there is to know about the dispersal of mankind, we're thrown a curve ball such as the Hobbit.


    Artist's Sketch - Puebla Woman (by Laura Meyer)

    The above is an artist's conception sketch of the Puebla Woman's skull found near Puebla, Mexico circa 1890, purchased by Joseph Dorenberg, German and Belgian Consul to Mexico at Puebla, and transported to the Liepzig Museum for display circa 1909.

    Based on diatoms included within the skull cavity upon removal, and preserved at the Wegener Institute in Dresden, German, Sam Van Landingham, a noted diatomist, dated the skull to the Sangamon period (80-240kya). She is quite the Hispanic babe!

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    I was nearly shocked by some truly impressive brow ridges here in the Philippines, not typical or common they just appeared at one family gathering. I will look for photos, or try to get some.

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    Hi Assphire,

    Welcome to the Gate!

    You raise an interesting point. I noticed the same in southern India and then when my daughter travelled through southern India and on to Australia, she noticed a very similar bone structure in the Australian aborigines.

    Perhaps when Cogs gets his computer sorted out (he keeps getting cut off from the internet) he will be able to guide us on the genetics of this particular part of the human race.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cognito View Post
    Alright, I will do my best to provide a straightforward explanation to what is essentially an incredibly complex project with almost an infinite number of variables to consider. Not an easy task for this particular latter-day Neanderthal hybrid.

    First of all, John Hawks, a well known professor of anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (his excellent anthropology site is here: http://johnhawks.net/weblog), is attempting to compare which populations have the closest affinity to Neanderthals.

    In order to makes his comparisons, Hawks is using data from the Vindija 33.16 Neanderthal Mitochondrial Genome that was sequenced by Richard Green, Svante Paabo et al in 2008. See: http://anthropology.net/2008/08/07/t...unced-in-cell/. The above Neanderthal genome results are compared to Hap-Maps (Haplogroup Maps) as provided by the '1000 Genomes Project' to determine how similar the various populations' SNPs (Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms) are to Neanderthal SNPs.

    In other words, Neanderthals were isolated from other archaic populations for many eons and as a result, many SNP changes (mutations) occurred between archaic groups. Therefore, the group with the fewest differences in SNPs was doing the most hanky panky and having children (hybrids) to tell about it.




    Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (Mutation Example)



    The '1000 Genomes Project' was established to sequence complete human genomes. Ish, as you may recall, I was invited to participate in the project but decided not to do so - thereby, not driving them batty with my weird genetics. The project includes the following groupings so far:

    1. Europeans (CEU)
    2. Chinese (CHB)
    3. Japanese (JPT)
    4. Gujarat (GIH)
    5. Africans Supergroup
    6. Luhyah (LWK)
    7. Maasai (MKK)
    8. Yoruba (YRI)
    9. African-American (ASW)

    All that can be done at the present time is to compare the relative closeness of different groups to Neanderthal SNPs. The idea that everyone with ancestry outside of Africa has from 1-4% Neanderthal genetic material is simply an estimate of the whole and not an exact science since they're somewhat 'shooting at a moving target'.

    Hawks is not using percentages between different groups since those percentages can be misleading. However, the data still indicates which groups are genetically closer to Neanderthals than other groups. So far, as expected, Europeans appear to have the highest affinity (estimated as high as a 4% contribution), but there are a few surprises.

    Americans with ancestry from Gujarit (GIH) from West India appear to have less affinity with Neanderthals than East Asians. Also, there appears to be some gene flow between Neanderthals and Africans that was not hitherto found, especially among the Maasai (MKK) and African-Americans (ASW) living in the Southwest U.S. The small amount of gene flow apparent (estimated by Hawks at 1/4%) could be due to latter-day population movements and intergroup breeding, random bias, or something else.

    The puzzling conclusion so far is that the Chinese and Japanese appear to be genetically closer to Neanderthals than West Indians. Not sure what that means other than ... maybe the Denisovans are to blame for that??!!??
    Fast coastal migration went all way to japan. But once humans occupies area, they tend to block others from migrating fast.
    You can easily see this in japan. haplogroup D is old gene but due to relative isolation after ice age ended, it is still preserved. And later chinese/korean invasion/migration, it still did not dilute northern main island as much as south.

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    There hasn't been much deviation in the MSM regarding the statistical 1-3%. What they like to do is discuss how 'everybody' outside sub saharan africa has a 'little bit' of neandertal DNA, purposely focussing on samples from far flung areas such as coastal western europe, Japan and PNG, whilst at the same time clearly telling us the interbreeding area was Israel/middle east. In addition we have a wealth of evidence about what kind of environment neandertal's were adapted to and many of their physical features.

    It puzzles me why more specific or isolated groups are not being tested, particularly from the region where interbreeding is said to have occured - the middle east. Now obviously the primary conclusion is that AMH's picked up neandertal alleles while 'passing' through the middle east on route to wherever their migration and genetic flow took them. But what about groups that continued to occupy the mediteranean levant and surrounding areas?

    Some speculation:
    - One of the researchers from the Max Planck institute admitted on german TV that semetic people had much higher percentages of neandertal DNA but the segment was cut and is no longer available. He might have said incorrect information but at the same time it may make perfect sense as that is indeed the area of interbreeding and the hotspot for interaction between neandertal and AMH over a large time span. Also many people from the middle east and lower central europe do exhibit pronounced physical neandertal features such as large nose, stocky build, extreme hairiness and pronounced brow ridges. Its an area of considerable mixing of course but there are many stocky physique people from this area today that do not resemble the African slimmer and taller build. In addition this part of the world has a high degree of sexual dimorphism which neandertals also appear to exhibit.
    - Given that neandertals preferred mountainous and forest habitat to open plains one could test isolated people from mountainous regions. This has been done to an extent by John Hawkes who indicates Tuscan people have a higher percentage of neandertal DNA. The ice man from Tyrol, found in an Alpine area, also had higher neandertal DNA. So to find out if certain groups have higher neandertal DNA it seems rather pointless to keep sampling western europeans that hug the coasts or chinese people but groups that have lived in mountainous regions in eurasia. I would like to see some DNA tests of people from the mountainous regions of the Caucasus, Zagros etc.
    - There are some possible biblical references. Given the Bible appears to contain very old stories, its possible some of these go a far way back into history, distilled from older oral stories. When I read the chapters on the Nephilim being 'men of renown, giants, who took the daughters of men to have children' it seems rather fitting to the neandertal scenario. Giants may not have meant tallness but represented the incredible strength, aggressiveness and robustness neandertals had. They could have easily been seen as giants and taking the 'daughters of men' fits in with the genetic evidence we have that suggests only neandertal males could produce viable offspring with human females. Also Esau in the Bible is described suspicously close to a neandertal. So much complexity and history stems from the middle east and I suspect it has more to do with the neandertals than we think and its repercussions are still being played out today.
    - Some people, especially from europe and middle east display pronounced neandertal features. The biggest difference I see is body shape. Most europeans appear tropically adapted in body shape with tall slender builds and long legs. These probably fall into the statistical 3-4% neandertal. But there is a smaller percentage of people that do not possess the tropical body shape at all. Large stocky bodies, wide feet, hairiness, extreme strength. Think of romanian weightlifters, hairy scottish strongmen or beaked nosed jews semetic people. This is not meant as offence to anyone, but some people have physical features that are simply not consistent with gracile AMH. Now they may not actually have any higher percentage of DNA but these physical features are displayed none the less. The difficulty too is that AMH were also more robust in the past and these people could be displaying remnant cromag genes. As politically incorrect as it is - wouldn't it be interesting to test people who look more neandertal for higher DNA? Why is there an avoidance to do so?
    - The Basque people have an intriguing and unique past. Some claim they have high Neandertal DNA but I am yet to see convincing genetic evidence of this yet.

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    Thanks, some very interesting food for thought there.

    Playing into all that too is Out of Asia, as opposed to the orthodoxy which is Out of Africa, the former being one scenario that's becoming increasingly likely but which the self-appointed gatekeepers to our back story seem hell bent on ignoring

    At the end of the day, the only science that gets funded is that which will show a back story which supports their agenda.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ishtar View Post
    Thanks, some very interesting food for thought there.

    Playing into all that too is Out of Asia, as opposed to the orthodoxy which is Out of Africa, the former being one scenario that's becoming increasingly likely but which the self-appointed gatekeepers to our back story seem hell bent on ignoring

    At the end of the day, the only science that gets funded is that which will show a back story which supports their agenda.

    The out of asia theory is very interesting and perhaps there is an agenda but it's also simply a case of what evidence is available. We have some good DNA from AMH from about 190,000 years ago in Africa along with old AMH in the middle east and China. Now it's possible that those AMH had originally been in the middle east/eurasia then moved south back into Africa but we don't have any evidence of that. We have evidence of primary gene flow (of modern humans) from a small band of AMH that were in Africa at least 150,000 years ago and evidence of admixture from neandertal and denisova. There is considerable physical evidence asians have other archaic admixture, possibly erectus, based particularly on teeth structure.

    The huge problem is there are not many fossils, fossils are really hard to formulate in the first place, epsecially in forests and not all fossils produce viable DNA.

    But certainly I think there were a few waves of AMH branching out into northern hemisphere regions and the influx of neandertal in the west and denisova in the east for example played a significant role in the evolution of modern humans. The bottleneck of the middle east must have been a fascinating place in the past. It begs the question too of why the middle east is so complex and dynamic even today.

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    Forum Newbie rocket7777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cognito View Post
    The puzzling conclusion so far is that the Chinese and Japanese appear to be genetically closer to Neanderthals than West Indians. Not sure what that means other than ... maybe the Denisovans are to blame for that??!!??
    I think it is from middle eastern blood. For example persepolis had similar sirius worship as asukaga japan.
    Other than that, chinese myth of founder seems make sense if some sumer/other middle eastern brought engineering.
    I think most important part of neanderthal gene was brain.

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    Forum Newbie paulscape's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rocket7777 View Post
    I think it is from middle eastern blood. For example persepolis had similar sirius worship as asukaga japan.
    Other than that, chinese myth of founder seems make sense if some sumer/other middle eastern brought engineering.
    I think most important part of neanderthal gene was brain.
    The percentages, as currently tested, indicate relatively high neanderthal DNA in east asians but it isn't so straight forward. In some populations the asian % is higher than european. Denisova may account for this. In other words East asians have a small percentage of european and middle eastern neandertal genetic admixture (from the original interbreeding that took place as AMH genetic flow moved through the middle east and into europe or asia) and then also more admixture of denisova, which itself contains a % of european and middle eastern neandertal DNA. The denisova admixture currently appears to be bolstering up the neandertal % in east asians and the highest denisova % is found in melanesian populations.

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    Forum Newbie rocket7777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paulscape View Post
    The percentages, as currently tested, indicate relatively high neanderthal DNA in east asians but it isn't so straight forward. In some populations the asian % is higher than european. Denisova may account for this. In other words East asians have a small percentage of european and middle eastern neandertal genetic admixture (from the original interbreeding that took place as AMH genetic flow moved through the middle east and into europe or asia) and then also more admixture of denisova, which itself contains a % of european and middle eastern neandertal DNA. The denisova admixture currently appears to be bolstering up the neandertal % in east asians and the highest denisova % is found in melanesian populations.
    I think there's some missing link neanderthal with black straight hair with some genes that were closer to human. Things like straight hair helps in hot humid environment so I believe it is easier to acquire them before 60kyp(ie 60-600kyp) than past 60kyp.
    Due to kind of orangish hair associated with new guinea and lighter hair of australian oborigines, I tend to believe denisova had light orange/blonde hair.
    Of course there are possibility of partial chromosome transfer, but easier to have missing link.
    So that's where sub 2% neanderthal come from, ie actually about 2% total but counted less due to different variety of neanderthal.
    Other than that, lighter east asian probably have higher whitish genes from migration that brought technology to pre-shang china.
    I think skin pigmentation uses like 8 chromosomes so perhaps one pair is responsible for reducing pigmentation and providing beneficial for the brain.

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