This article was taken from PLoS Biol 8(1):\ud e1000285. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1000285The relative contributions to modern European populations of Paleolithic hunter-gatherers and Neolithic farmers from the\ud Near East have been intensely debated. Haplogroup R1b1b2 (R-M269) is the commonest European Y-chromosomal lineage,\ud increasing in frequency from east to west, and carried by 110 million European men. Previous studies suggested a\ud Paleolithic origin, but here we show that the geographical distribution of its microsatellite diversity is best explained by\ud spread from a single source in the Near East via Anatolia during the Neolithic. Taken with evidence on the origins of other\ud haplogroups, this indicates that most European Y chromosomes originate in the Neolithic expansion. This reinterpretation\ud makes Europe a prime example of how technological and cultural change is linked with the expansion of a Y-chromosomal\ud lineage, and the contrast of this pattern with that shown by maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA suggests a unique role\ud for males in the transition
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