Wednesday, February 14, 2018

The basic lineages of L3 had probably spread across Africa prior to 100,000 BC

Vicente M. Cabrera1*, Patricia Marrero, , Khaled K. Abu-Amero,Jose M. Larruga. (2017). Carriers of mitochondrial DNA macrohaplogroup L3 basic lineages migrated back to Africa from Asia around 70,000 years ago.

Cabrera et al, argue that the basic lineages for L3 migrated back to Africa 70,000 years ago. The proposition is not supported by any archaeological evidence. Absent any archaeological evidence this proposal lacks any credibility. It is more likely that L3 had already spread across Africa prior to 100,000 BC. This is obvious by the fact that the Aurignacians carried L3 (N).

The TMRCA mtDNA ancestor of hgs L3, M and N lived around 94.3kya(3). There appears to have been a serial expansion of haplogroup N from the Great Lakes region of Africa to other parts of Africa 93kya (3a).  From Tanzania Khoisan speaking people probably spread the haplogroup into Ethiopia by 80kya. this agrees with Cabrera et al's contention that L3, had early spread into East Africa.

      By 70 kya Khoisan people probably spread hg N into West Africa. Sometime before 40kya there was probably a second migration event from Cameroon and possibly the Senegambian region into Northwest Africa on into Iberia (3a).
     The mtDNA haplogroup N has the common transitions 73,7028,11719, 12705,14766 and 16223. The defining mutations include 8701,9540,10398, 10873 and 15301. Haplogroup N is a branch of L3 (M,N).
         There are also N hgs found in Africa. Haplogroups N,N* and N1 is found in  low frequencies within Sub-Saharan groups including  Senegambians (9), Tanzanians (3) and modern Ethiopians (1) .In Egypt 8.8 percent of the Gurma carry hg N1b (25).
      Much of the ancient mtDNA found in Iberia has no relationship to the people presently living in Iberia (1a). Dominguez found that the lineages recovered from ancient skeletons are the African lineages L1b,L2 and L3. Almost 50% of the lineages from the Abauntz Chalcolithic deposits and Tres Montes, in Navarre are the Sub-Saharan lineages L1b,L2 and L3.
    Until recently it was assumed that the earliest dates for hg N were in Eastern Eurasia. This view has changed recently as a result of the extraction and examination of ancient mtDNA from Cro Magnon skeletons dating to the Aurignacian period (26).
        The archaeological evidence indicates that AMH replaced Neanderthal during the Aurignacian period in Europe between 32-35kya (27). The Aurignacian civilization appears to have expanded from West to East (28-30).The founders of this culture came from Africa (28,29,31). Some researchers have argued that the Aurignacian culture was introduced to Europe from Africa (1a,32). They based this conclusion on the fact that its tool kit was foreign to the Mousterian type, and the culture appears in a mature form throughout Europe from France to Central  Europe (1a,3a, 32-33).
       Around 40,000 BC Europe was occupied mainly by Neanderthals. They begin to be replaced in Europe around 32,000 by the CroMagnon
people at Les Eyzies in France (29). It is also evident that archaic humans were replaced in much of the Levant by the Levantine Aurignacian culture bearers by a local variant of this technology at Ksar Akil Xlll-Vll 32kya , not 60-50kya. 
The Cro Magnon  DNA found in the ancient skeletons dates back to the Aurignacian period. The Cro magnon skeletons  belong to the N haplogroup (26).  
     The Cro Magnon skeletons carried N1a,N1b,N1c and N* (26). It is characterized by motifs 00073G,10873C, 10238T and A4CC between nucleotide positions 10397 and 10400. Most of the skeletons carried hg N*.
     It appears that the hg N was the most frequent mtDNA carried by Western European populations for over 20,000 years. This gene as discussed earlier is found primarily today outside Western Europe. The Cro Magnon people were mainly hunter-gathers.
     Haak et al. found that the twenty-four samples included haplogroups H or V, T, K, J , N1a and U3 (36). The frequency of N1a among ancient samples ranged from 8% to 42%.The archaeological evidence make it clear that the Cro Magnon people probably originated in Africa where we find hg N among African populations throughout the continent (3-3a,9). The spread of Cro Magnon populations from Iberia eastward into Eastern Europe and the Levant support the view that  haplogroup N was carried into Eurasia by Cro Magnon population from Africa across the Straits of Gibraltar into Iberia (28).
            The dates for the hg N in East Asia are far later than the dates for hg N among Cro Magnon populations in western Eurasia.  This suggest that the hg N was carried into Iberia by Cro Magnon people.   
       The Aurignacian culture did not enter Europe from the Levant. The Aurignacian civilization appears to have expanded from West to East (29-30) . The spread of the Aurignacian culture from Western to Eastern Eurasian suggest that while hg N*,N1 was already present among Western Eurasians,  by around 12-14 kya hgs N2- N3 probably originated in Siberia, not East Asia. It would appear that the presence of these haplogroups in Eastern Europe are the result of a back migration from Siberia.
    The high frequency of hg N among the ancient Western Eurasians make it clear that eventhough hg M and hg N may have exited Africa along the southern coastal route out of Africa 65kya most carriers of hg N probably left Africa during the migratory trajectory across the Straits of Gibraltar. Low frequencies of hg N in East Asia and Oceania today, are probably the result of the southern coastal route out of Africa from the Red Sea on into Asia.This view is supported by the ancient M and N lineages found in Asia.
      In conclusion, the  ‘Classic Aurignacian’ culture probably began in Africa, crossed the Straits of Gibraltar into Iberia, and expanded eastward across Europe (3a,40-41,44) . The archaeological record informs us that CroMagnon people carried hg N and replaced the Neanderthal population of the Levant,  at Ksar Akil around 32, 000 years ago (42-43), not the Natufians who entered the Levant almost 20,000 years later. Moreover, by 7000 BC the dominant haplogroup of Western Eurasians remained hg N1(36) .
     The appearance of phylogenetically related sequences of hg L3  present  in many ancient  Iberian skeletons suggest  that this haplogroup may have a long history in Iberia. The fact that hg N came to Iberia with the Cro-Magnon people in Aurignacian times suggest that carries of L3 may have also been part of this population movement.
       The mtDNA, skeletal and archaeological record generally,  support a third migration event out of Africa before the expansion of the Natufians into the Levant 10,000-20,000 ybp (35). This third out of Africa event took place between 40-35kya, when modern man crossed from Africa into Iberia carrying haplogroups N and L3,  and began to replace Neanderthal as the dominant population in western Eurasia.

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