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African migration/contribution into Europe

Posted by big mike M on

Prehistoric contacts over the Straits of Gibraltar

indicated by genetic analysis of Iberian

Bronze Age cattle

http://www.pnas.org/content/102/24/8431.full.pdf+html?sid=8370fb44-581a-4cf7-bcaf-da0a09e388bb

Previously, the appearance of the Late Atlantic Neolithic culture had been placed at a significantly later date than the Egyptian culture, and this chronology and the cultural similarity were interpreted as implying that Egypt was the original source (14). However, more accurate radiocarbon dates obtained from Late Atlantic Neolithic culture sites subsequently redated the origin of this culture to being approximately the same as that of the predynastic Badarian Egyptian culture (15), leading to the hypothesis that these two cultures might derive from a common area, perhaps through pastoral groups living in the Sahara. The culture linked to the Late Atlantic Neolithic period is known to have been dedicated almost exclusively to cattle breeding, secondarily complemented by sheep and goat breeding (14), suggesting that an investigation of the origin of Iberian cattle may offer further insight into early Iberian–African cultural contacts.

 

These early Neolithic populations of Andalusia appear to have consisted of a number of distinct groups (12), one of which is suggested to have African origin due to finds of characteristic red ochre ceramics (13, 14). Similarities have also been noted between the predynastic Badarian Egyptian culture dated to the 5th millennium B.C. and the Late Atlantic Neolithic culture in western Andalusia (14). Previously, the appearance of the Late Atlantic Neolithic culture had been placed at a significantly later date than the Egyptian culture, and this chronology and the cultural similarity were interpreted as implying that Egypt was the original source (14). However, more accurate radiocarbon dates obtained from Late Atlantic Neolithic culture sites subsequently redated the origin of this culture to being approximately the same as that of the predynastic Badarian Egyptian culture (15), leading to the hypothesis that these two cultures might derive from a common area, perhaps through pastoral groups living in the Sahara. The culture linked to the Late Atlantic Neolithic period is known to have been dedicated almost exclusively to cattle breeding, secondarily complemented by sheep and goat breeding (14), suggesting that an investigation of the origin of Iberian cattle may offer further insight into early Iberian–African cultural contacts.

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Testing the Hypothesis of an African Cattle Contribution in Southern

European Breeds (H2).

http://www.pnas.org/content/103/21/8113.full.pdf+html?sid=5a7e2127-600a-4e72-90e9-e4ae9c1f1ffd

 

However, even if 63 and 11 different T1 haplotypes are observed in Africa and Europe,

respectively, only two of them are present in both regions. In addition, (i) T1 haplotypes can be found well beyond the area of maximum Moorish expansion, (ii) recent introductions of exotic cattle are usually male mediated (not affecting mtDNA) (34), and (iii) one T1 haplotype has been

recently observed in a sample of 16 Bronze Age cattle remains from Spain.

 

So, the hypothesis of a recent and geographically restricted introduction of African cattle does not seem sufficient to explain the T1 distribution in Europe. On the contrary, DNA data are compatible with earlier gene flow into several Mediterranean regions. There is evidence of early diffusion of cattle pastoralism by people crossing arms of sea (21–23), and, hence, the same process may have led to the dispersal in Europe of breeds carrying the T1 haplotype.

 

Conclusions

 

The modern and ancient mtDNA sequences we present here do not support the currently

accepted hypothesis of a single Neolithic origin in the Near East. The processes of livestock

domestication and diffusion were certainly more complex than previously suggested, and our data provide some evidence in favor of the hypothesis that the origin of European cattle is multiple. Breeds domesticated in the Near East and introduced in Europe during the Neolithic diffusion probably intermixed, at least in some regions, with local wild animals and with African cattle introduced by maritime routes.


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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12392505?dopt=Abstract


1) Greeks share an important part of their genetic pool with sub-Saharan Africans (Ethiopians and west Africans) also supported by Chr 7 Markers. The gene flow from Black Africa to Greece may have occurred in Pharaonic times or when Saharan people emigrated after the present hyperarid conditions were established (5000 years B.C.).



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