New Results

Ancient human genomes suggest three ancestral populations for present-day Europeans

Iosif Lazaridis, Nick Patterson, Alissa Mittnik, Gabriel Renaud, Swapan Mallick, Peter H. Sudmant, Joshua G. Schraiber, Sergi Castellano, Karola Kirsanow, Christos Economou, Ruth Bollongino, Qiaomei Fu, Kirsten Bos, Susanne Nordenfelt, Cesare de Filippo, Kay Prüfer, Susanna Sawyer, Cosimo Posth, Wolfgang Haak, Fredrik Hallgren, Elin Fornander, George Ayodo, Hamza A. Babiker, Elena Balanovska, Oleg Balanovsky, Haim Ben-Ami, Judit Bene, Fouad Berrada, Francesca Brisighelli, George B.J. Busby, Francesco Cali, Mikhail Churnosov, David E.C. Cole, Larissa Damba, Dominique Delsate, George van Driem, Stanislav Dryomov, Sardana A. Fedorova, Michael Francken, Irene Gallego Romero, Marina Gubina, Jean-Michel Guinet, Michael Hammer, Brenna Henn, Tor Helvig, Ugur Hodoglugil, Aashish R. Jha, Rick Kittles, Elza Khusnutdinova, Toomas Kivisild, Vaidutis Kučinskas, Rita Khusainova, Alena Kushniarevich, Leila Laredj, Sergey Litvinov, Robert W. Mahley, Béla Melegh, Ene Metspalu, Joanna Mountain, Thomas Nyambo, Ludmila Osipova, Jüri Parik, Fedor Platonov, Olga L. Posukh, Valentino Romano, Igor Rudan, Ruslan Ruizbakiev, Hovhannes Sahakyan, Antonio Salas, Elena B. Starikovskaya, Ayele Tarekegn, Draga Toncheva, Shahlo Turdikulova, Ingrida Uktveryte, Olga Utevska, Mikhail Voevoda, Joachim Wahl, Pierre Zalloua, Levon Yepiskoposyan, Tatijana Zemunik, Alan Cooper, Cristian Capelli, Mark G. Thomas, Sarah A. Tishkoff, Lalji Singh, Kumarasamy Thangaraj, Richard Villems, David Comas, Rem Sukernik, Mait Metspalu, Matthias Meyer, Evan E. Eichler, Joachim Burger, Montgomery Slatkin, Svante Pääbo, Janet Kelso, David Reich, Johannes Krause

Abstract

Analysis of ancient DNA can reveal historical events that are difficult to discern through study of present-day individuals. To investigate European population history around the time of the agricultural transition, we sequenced complete genomes from a ~7,500 year old early farmer from the Linearbandkeramik (LBK) culture from Stuttgart in Germany and an ~8,000 year old hunter-gatherer from the Loschbour rock shelter in Luxembourg. We also generated data from seven ~8,000 year old hunter-gatherers from Motala in Sweden. We compared these genomes and published ancient DNA to new data from 2,196 samples from 185 diverse populations to show that at least three ancestral groups contributed to present-day Europeans. The first are Ancient North Eurasians (ANE), who are more closely related to Upper Paleolithic Siberians than to any present-day population. The second are West European Hunter-Gatherers (WHG), related to the Loschbour individual, who contributed to all Europeans but not to Near Easterners. The third are Early European Farmers (EEF), related to the Stuttgart individual, who were mainly of Near Eastern origin but also harbored WHG-related ancestry. We model the deep relationships of these populations and show that about ~44% of the ancestry of EEF derived from a basal Eurasian lineage that split prior to the separation of other non-Africans.