Reconstructing Native American Migrations from Whole-Genome and Whole-Exome Data Academic Article uri icon

Overview

MeSH Major

  • Gene Frequency
  • Genetics, Population
  • Human Migration
  • Indians, North American

abstract

  • There is great scientific and popular interest in understanding the genetic history of populations in the Americas. We wish to understand when different regions of the continent were inhabited, where settlers came from, and how current inhabitants relate genetically to earlier populations. Recent studies unraveled parts of the genetic history of the continent using genotyping arrays and uniparental markers. The 1000 Genomes Project provides a unique opportunity for improving our understanding of population genetic history by providing over a hundred sequenced low coverage genomes and exomes from Colombian (CLM), Mexican-American (MXL), and Puerto Rican (PUR) populations. Here, we explore the genomic contributions of African, European, and especially Native American ancestry to these populations. Estimated Native American ancestry is 48% in MXL, 25% in CLM, and 13% in PUR. Native American ancestry in PUR is most closely related to populations surrounding the Orinoco River basin, confirming the Southern American ancestry of the TaĆ­no people of the Caribbean. We present new methods to estimate the allele frequencies in the Native American fraction of the populations, and model their distribution using a demographic model for three ancestral Native American populations. These ancestral populations likely split in close succession: the most likely scenario, based on a peopling of the Americas 16 thousand years ago (kya), supports that the MXL Ancestors split 12.2kya, with a subsequent split of the ancestors to CLM and PUR 11.7kya. The model also features effective populations of 62,000 in Mexico, 8,700 in Colombia, and 1,900 in Puerto Rico. Modeling Identity-by-descent (IBD) and ancestry tract length, we show that post-contact populations also differ markedly in their effective sizes and migration patterns, with Puerto Rico showing the smallest effective size and the earlier migration from Europe. Finally, we compare IBD and ancestry assignments to find evidence for relatedness among European founders to the three populations.

publication date

  • December 2013

Research

keywords

  • Academic Article

Identity

Language

  • eng

PubMed Central ID

  • PMC3873240

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pgen.1004023

PubMed ID

  • 24385924

Additional Document Info

start page

  • e1004023

volume

  • 9

number

  • 12