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DNA Confirms European Wipe-out of Early Americans

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The first large-scale study of ancient DNA from early American people has confirmed the devastating impact of European colonisation on the Indigenous American populations of the time.

Published in Science Advances (http://tinyurl.com/za9vzu9), the study reveals a striking absence of pre-Columbian genetic lineages in modern Indigenous Americans, and thus points to the extinction of these lineages with the arrival of the Spaniards.

The research team reconstructed maternal genetic lineages of Indigenous American populations by sequencing mitochondrial genomes extracted from bone and teeth samples taken from 92 pre-Columbian human mummies and skeletons aged between 500 and 8600 years old.

“Surprisingly, none of the genetic lineages we found in almost 100 ancient humans were present, or showed evidence of descendants, in today’s Indigenous populations,” says joint lead author Dr Bastien...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.