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Thread: "So Who's the Most European of Us All?" - from Eurogenes Genetic Ancestry Project

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    "So Who's the Most European of Us All?" - from Eurogenes Genetic Ancestry Project

    So who's the most European of us all?

    Basically, the first map below reveals the answer. It shows the spread of a European specific cluster from a global-wide ADMIXTURE analysis at K=8 (eight ancestral populations assumed), which I call "North European". Thus, genetically, the most European groups are found around the Baltic Sea, and in particular in the East Baltic region. In my genome collection, samples from Lithuania consistently and clearly score the highest percentages in ADMIXTURE clusters specific to Europe. However, I suspect that if I had Latvians with no known foreign ancestry going back more than four generations, they'd come out the most European. Hopefully we can test that in the near future.



    Below are the fifteen Eurogenes sample groups that scored the highest percentage levels of membership in the North European cluster. The list only includes groups with five or more individuals present in the analysis, so some populations, like Estonians or Danes, weren't included, even though they easily made the cut. The spreadsheet with all the results from this run can be seen here. A table of Fst (genetic) distances between the eight clusters is available here.

    Lithuanians 77%
    Finns 74%
    Belorussians 70%
    Swedes 69%
    Norwegians 68%
    Vologda Russians 68%
    Russians 68%
    Poles 68%
    Erzya 66%
    Ukrainians 66%
    Moksha 66%
    Orcadians 63%
    HapMap Utah Americans (CEU) 63%
    Irish 63%
    British 62%


    So why did I pick the results from K=8, and not some other K, like 2, 10, or 25? Well, it's not possible to evaluate who is more European without a European-specific cluster (ie. modal in Europeans, with a low frequency outside of Europe). Provided that a decent number and range of global and West Eurasian samples are used in the analysis, such clusters begin appearing at around K=5 or K=6, and start breaking up into local clusters from about K=9. During the experiments I ran at various K, I found that the runs below K=8 produced European clusters that spilled too generously outside of the borders of Europe. On the other hand, runs above K=8 produced European clusters that weren't representative of enough European groups (ie. too localized). But the European cluster from K=8 was pretty much perfect, and I think that's obvious from the map. In fact, I can hardly believe how well it fits the modern geographic concept of Europe - north of the Mediterranean and west of the Urals. Amazing stuff.

    There are two other clusters that show up across Europe in non-trivial amounts - Mediterranean and Caucasus (shown below). These can also be thought of as native European clusters, since they've been on the continent for thousands of years, but they're not as clear cut signals of European ancestry, because they show peaks in West Asia.



    http://img138.imageshack.us/img138/6542/caucasus.jpg

    So what are these three clusters showing exactly? They represent allele frequencies in modern populations, and in fact, these can change fairly rapidly due to admixture, selection, and genetic drift. So claiming that such clusters represent pure ancient populations is unlikely to be true in most cases, if ever. However, I don't think there's anything wrong in saying that, when robust enough, they can be thought of as signals of ancestry from relatively distinct ancestral groups.

    Indeed, anyone who's read up on the prehistory of Europe, knows that there are three general Neolithic archeological waves to consider when trying to untangle the story of the peopling of Europe. These are Mediterranean Neolithic, Anatolian Neolithic and Forest Neolithic (for example, see here).

    Mediterranean Neolithic refers to a series of migrations from West Asia via the Mediterranean and its coasts. The areas most profoundly affected by these movements include the islands of Sardinia and Corsica, and the Southwest European mainland. Anatolian Neolithic describes migrations into Europe from modern day Turkey, mostly into the Balkans, but also as far as Germany and France. At the moment, Forest Neolithic of Northeastern Europe is something of a mystery. No one can say for certain whether it was largely a local phenomenon, with northern hunter gatherers turning to farming, or the result of colonization of the forest zone by populations from the south. My bet is that it was a mix of the two (see here).

    Obviously, it would be very difficult to dismiss the correlations between these three broad archeological groups and the European and two European/West Asian clusters produced in my K=8 ADMIXTURE analysis. Is it a coincidence that the Mediterranean cluster today peaks in Sardinia, which has been largely shielded from foreign admixture since the Neolithic, and today forms a very distinct Southern European isolate? Why does the North European cluster show the highest peaks in classic Forest Neolithic territory? And why does the Caucasus cluster radiate in Europe from the southeast, which is where Anatolian farmers had the greatest impact? These can't all be coincidences, and I'm willing to bet that none of them are. I'm convinced that the three clusters from my K=8 run are strong signals from the Neolithic, and the North European cluster also from the Mesolithic.

    Eventually, these issues will be settled with results from ancient DNA, in a much more comprehensive way than ever possible using modern genomes. We've already seen dribs and drabs of data come in, mostly from Mesolithic, Neolithic and Bronze Age sites around Europe. So it's useful to ask whether my ADMIXTURE analysis and commentary here mirror these early results? I think they do. For instance, here's an interesting conclusion regarding the East Baltic area from a study on ancient Scandinavian mtDNA by Malmström et al.

    • Through analysis of DNA extracted from ancient Scandinavian human remains, we show that people of the Pitted Ware culture were not the direct ancestors of modern Scandinavians (including the Saami people of northern Scandinavia) but are more closely related to contemporary populations of the eastern Baltic region. Our findings support hypotheses arising from archaeological analyses that propose a Neolithic or post-Neolithic population replacement in Scandinavia [7]. Furthermore, our data are consistent with the view that the eastern Baltic represents a genetic refugia for some of the European hunter-gatherer populations.


    I suppose there will be people wondering why I didn't take Sub-Saharan African, East Asian, and South Asian admixtures into account in my analysis. The reason is that I wasn't looking at which group was most West Eurasian, or Caucasoid. Based on everything I've seen to date, in my own work as well as elsewhere, the most West Eurasian group would probably be the French Basques from the HGDP. However, the differences between them, and certain groups from Northeastern Europe, like Northern Poles and Lithuanians, really wouldn't be that great anyway. I might do a write up about that at some point.


    Credits...

    - Maps by Eurogenes project member FR7

    - Additional stats by Eurogenes project member DESEUK1


    References...

    Helena Malmström et al., Ancient DNA Reveals Lack of Continuity between Neolithic Hunter-Gatherers and Contemporary Scandinavians, Current Biology, 24 September 2009, doi:10.1016/j.cub.2009.09.017

    Noreen von Cramon-Taubadel and Ron Pinhasi, Craniometric data support a mosaic model of demic and cultural Neolithic diffusion to outlying regions of Europe, Proc. R. Soc. B published online 23 February 2011, doi: 10.1098/rspb.2010.2678
    http://bga101.blogspot.se/2012/04/so...of-us-all.html

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    Eurogenes is a liar and has a clear agenda, but most people aren't in a position to counter his claims. He's dangerous and his articles shouldn't be reproduced here.

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    It is less about who is more European, more of who has more of a neolithic hunter gather groups DNA (apparently).

    For what it is worth, this is my results from the spreadsheet.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Hamar Fox View Post
    Eurogenes is a liar and has a clear agenda, but most people aren't in a position to counter his claims. He's dangerous and his articles shouldn't be reproduced here.
    Ok. May I ask why? I don't know if he has any more of a clearly biased agenda than other people who are working in this field, but I respect your opinion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sehnsucht View Post
    It is less about who is more European, more of who has more of a neolithic hunter gather groups DNA (apparently).
    Yes, I guess you could put it that way. It would probably have been more suitable to name the article "Who's the most Northern European of them all?", since the cluster he seemingly chose to focus more on has the highest frequencies in the Northern half of the continent.
    The ethnicities we know as Europeans are of course genetically descended from more than one single ancestral group, but some elements tend to be stronger than others, depending on which group you are looking at.
    He also says that two of the other clusters in this analysis can be called native European, but they do not peak as strongly and clearly in Europe as the first one:

    • "There are two other clusters that show up across Europe in non-trivial amounts - Mediterranean and Caucasus (shown below). These can also be thought of as native European clusters, since they've been on the continent for thousands of years, but they're not as clear cut signals of European ancestry, because they show peaks in West Asia."


    For what it is worth, this is my results from the spreadsheet.

    And here's mine:


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    Quote Originally Posted by Olavsson View Post
    Ok. May I ask why? I don't know if he has any more of a clearly biased agenda than other people who are working in this field, but I respect your opinion.
    Of course he does. If you follow his on other forums he'll reveal them for to see. Basically, what he garnishes isn't real equivalence: 1) Poles are a race of Gods 2) Nations he dislikes are mixed race. Interpret all within that formula and hey presto you're creating the history of his own mind.

    What you posted becomes more in light of point 1. He can't rewite all his data but he can subdue it to his travesty and spin all data he has. Poles are high on his list? Shocking. Only because he encumbered through his own definition of european. His entire site spurns out of hell his personal inferiority-complex which is why the SSA of other nations no matter how small it requires not a difference since he interprets 0.001 SSA in, say, a German as 'large' and reports it as such minus the actual figure and, say, 3.4% Siberian in Poles to be 'small' and reports as such without revealing steps of raw data. He's more of a manipulator of truth than an out and out liar but I call all such liars for the truth they do not tell.

    One irrelevant person's emotional balm should not be treated as information.

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    @ Hamar Fox:

    So the problem here is that Poles are high on the list, with 68% of the genetic cluster he calls "Northern European hunter-gatherer (+ Neolithic admixture)"? (And perhaps that the English are not on the top? )
    I can't really see the big problem here. Alright, so he chose to focus on the Nortern European-ish cluster because this one has higher peaks in Europe and much lower peaks in non-European countries - his "conclusion" as expressed in the title of the article is far-fetched, I'll certainly admit that. But Polako (or what he calls himself) has never claimed that the European ethnic groups have to completely fall into one single cluster to be European. After all: if he had claimed that, then the Poles would only be 68% European if only that cluster counts for European. But there isn't any real problem with the genetic run itself.

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    I'm finding it hard to concentrate but I'll reply as best I can.

    Quote Originally Posted by Olavsson View Post
    @ Hamar Fox:

    So the problem here is that Poles are high on the list, with 68% of the genetic cluster he calls "Northern European hunter-gatherer (+ Neolithic admixture)"? (And perhaps that the English are not on the top? )
    My problem is that a constant theme issues from his work time and again so it doesn't matter what comes out of one instance it's the combination of all output from his mind that a pattern emerges. He defines european as a scale that though poles can't slide to the top are still high on. He doesn't centre European as 'Basques' because Poles would be noplace near high. As for the English close to the top, no the British are high on the list too relative to most germanics. How much it flatters me doesn't isn;t releavnt because I know that yet again his creates a false impression. Correct title: who are the most Northern European. Not taking into account siberian admixture as he states, but we all know why he's leaving that element out.

    I can't really see the big problem here. Alright, so he chose to focus on the Nortern European-ish cluster because this one has higher peaks in Europe and much lower peaks in non-European countries - his "conclusion" as expressed in the title of the article is far-fetched, I'll certainly admit that. But Polako (or what he calls himself) has never claimed that the European ethnic groups have to completely fall into one single cluster to be European. After all: if he had claimed that, then the Poles would only be 68% European if only that cluster counts for European. But there isn't any real problem with the genetic run itself.
    It overgenerated SSA in Sehnsucht's results for one and yours too since there isn't 0.6% SSA in norwegians. But like I said I still know pieces of data from befoe I was hurt that I remember my conclusions from better more honest data. Basques are without question the most european people. NW europeans (British, Dutch, German, French, irish) with some S Europeans (Sardinians, Basques, N Italians) have the least percentage admixture. Everything polako says is true, just like everything the creator of a sport says about the rules of is true but it doesn't mean much. He chose the scale, he chose the definition. And besides I've seen him openly state on that he wants to find non-caucasoid ancestry in western Europeans and that he refuses to accepting in poles. See each article as an extension of this no matter how spuriously right they are and you wont do wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Olavsson View Post
    @ Hamar Fox:

    So the problem here is that Poles are high on the list, with 68% of the genetic cluster he calls "Northern European hunter-gatherer (+ Neolithic admixture)"? (And perhaps that the English are not on the top? )
    I can't really see the big problem here. Alright, so he chose to focus on the Nortern European-ish cluster because this one has higher peaks in Europe and much lower peaks in non-European countries - his "conclusion" as expressed in the title of the article is far-fetched, I'll certainly admit that. But Polako (or what he calls himself) has never claimed that the European ethnic groups have to completely fall into one single cluster to be European. After all: if he had claimed that, then the Poles would only be 68% European if only that cluster counts for European. But there isn't any real problem with the genetic run itself.
    I'll try and put it another way. It'll be better to put it in point form so I can think more clearly.

    1. He is interested in slandering certain nations

    2. He is interested in showing Poles to be the most European/racially purest ethnicity

    3. He uses a combination of twisted actual facts, half-truths and omissions to achieve this

    4. This is the actual case.

    5. He selected one element of the Atlantic-Baltic (i.e european) group namely baltic and called in european.

    6. adhering to the antlantic-baltic group would have given him similar results, however, inclusion of Atlantic as european would be giving western and southern europeans greater values than he'd like.

    7. Although he didn't want to, even by the only scale he could use to paint his group as vastly more european than ones he hates (mostly Southern europeans), he was forced to include Britons.

    8. What he did want to do, however, despite having to incuding some groups he doesn't really like (britons especially, but also Irish and Scandinavians), was adhere to a scale that had NE europeans at the top, most western europeans in some insignificant middle and southern europeans drastically low)

    9. The truth is while NE Europeans do top the atlantic-baltic scale, its hardly as great a difference between west and east or southern and northern or baltic (including poles) and non-baltic as he wants, hence he omits the atlantic element.

    10. He hopes that he can make a case that poles are the least mixed of the nations on the list, so that finns for example are more european but also more mixed than poles, so eventually poles through elimination of higher ranked ethnicities by exposing admixture levels will become the most caucasoid true europeans.

    I hope this makes sense.

    10.

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    I was in the Eurogenes Genetic Ancestry Project. Polako/Davidski now has several calculators on gedmatch.com.

    Personally, I was very happy being in the project and I think Polako/Davidski is a genius. I like him a lot.

    I'm not tech savvy so it all eventually went over my head. I can't do PCA plots etc.

    I don't understand what R software is or CRAN mirrors.

    Here is the latest: http://bga101.blogspot.se/

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    Lithuanian language is very close to Sanskrit.

    Seems the split had been very early.

    As the Lithuanians preserved their old language nearly unchanged it is to assume that they have straight line from the very past to modern time. As there are very little changes or new words in their language it would suggest also very little miscenegation.
    weel nich will dieken dej mot wieken

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