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Old May 13th, 2014 #1
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Default Genetic research confirm Aryan invasion of India

ASIA / History of Ancient Indian Conquest Told in Modern Genes, Experts Say

Like an indelible signature enduring through a hundred generations, genes that entered India when conquering hordes swooped down from the north thousands of years ago are still there, and remain entrenched at the top of the caste system, scientists report. Analyses of the male Y chromosome, plus genes hidden in small cellular bodies called mitochondria, show that today's genetic patterns agree with accounts of ancient Indo-European warriors' conquering the Indian subcontinent.

The invaders apparently shoved the local men aside, took their women and set up the rigid caste system that exists today. Their descendants are still the elite within Hindu society.


Thus today's genetic patterns, the researchers explained, vividly reflect a historic event, or events, that occurred 3,000 or 4,000 years ago. The gene patterns "are consistent with a historical scenario in which invading Caucasoids -- primarily males -- established the caste system and occupied the highest positions, placing the indigenous population, who were more similar to Asians, in lower caste positions."

The researchers, from the University of Utah and Andhra Pradesh University in India, used two sets of genes in their analyses.

One set, from the mitochondria, are only passed maternally and can be used to track female inheritance. The other, on the male-determining Y chromosome, can only be passed along paternally and thus track male inheritance.

The data imply, then, "that there was a group of males with European affinities who were largely responsible for this invasion 3,000 or 4,000 years ago," said geneticist Lynn Jorde of the University of Utah.

If women had accompanied the invaders, he said, the evidence should be seen in the mitochondrial genes, but it is not evident.

According to geneticist Douglas Wallace of Emory University in Atlanta, the work reported by Jorde and his colleagues "is very interesting, and is certainly worth further study."

Along with Jorde, the research team included Michael Bamshad, W.S. Watkins and M.E. Dixon from Utah and B.B. Rao, B.V.R. Prasad and J.M. Naidu, from Andhra Pradesh University.


By studying both sets of genetic markers, the research team found clear evidence echoing what is still seen socially, that women can be upwardly mobile, in terms of caste, if they marry higher-caste men. In contrast, men generally do not move higher, because women rarely marry men from lower castes, the researchers said.

"Our expectations in this natural experiment are borne out when we look at the genes," said Jorde. "It's one of the few cases where we know the mating situation in a population for 150 generations. So it's kind of a test for how well the genes reflect a population's history."

The ancient story holds that invaders known as Indo-Europeans, or true Aryans, came from Eastern Europe or western Asia and conquered the Indian subcontinent. The people they subdued descended from the original inhabitants who had arrived far earlier from Africa and from other parts of Asia.

During the genetic studies, in 1996 and 1997, researchers took blood samples from hundreds of people in southern India. The analyses compared the genes from 316 caste members and 330 members of tribal populations, looking for signs of Asian, European and African ancestry.

In the mitochondrial genes passed along by females, Jorde said, they could see the clear background of Asian genes. "All of the caste groups were similar to Asians, the underlying population" that had originally been subdued.

But, he added, "when we look at the Y chromosome DNA, we see a very different pattern. The lower castes are most similar to Asians, and the upper castes are more European than Asian."

Further, "when we look at the different components within the upper caste, the group with the greatest European similarity of all is the warrior class, the Kshatriya, who are still at the top of the Hindu castes, with the Brahmins," Jorde said.

"But the Brahmins, in terms of their Y chromosomes, are a little bit more Asian."

So the genetic results are "consistent with historical accounts that women sometimes marry into higher caste, resulting in female gene flow between adjacent castes. In contrast, males seldom change castes, so Y chromosome" variation occurs only as a result of natural mutations, Jorde said.


He added that even though India's ancient caste system was abolished legally in the 1960s, it is still entrenched socially.

"People are very well aware of their caste membership," he said, noting that in some cities the housing is still arranged along caste lines. So "one might argue, unfortunately so, that it (the caste system) does exist in people's minds."

In terms of who marries whom, the researchers described the Hindu caste system as "governing the mating practices of nearly one-sixth of the world's population."

The blood samples taken from tribal people in southern India are still being analyzed, Jorde added.

But so far, "the tribal populations are more similar to the lower castes than to anyone else, similar to the original residents of India," he said.
"I die in the faith of my people. May the German people be aware of its enemies!"
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Old May 15th, 2014 #2
Pamela Ross
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Pamela Ross
Default India’s Fragmented Society Was Once a Melting Pot


Mix and then match. Ancient Indians from the north (ANI) and south (ASI) of India first intermarried widely and then began sticking to their own groups.

8 August 2013

“In India we celebrate the commonality of major differences,” wrote the celebrated author Shashi Tharoor about his native country. “We are a land of belonging rather than of blood.” Indeed, India’s 1.24-billion-strong population is one of the world’s most diverse, with 700 ethnic and language groups and possibly many more, depending on how they are counted.

Today, most of these groups keep pretty much to themselves, only rarely marrying outsiders. But a new study concludes that several thousand years ago, the entire subcontinent underwent a period of massive intermarriage, shuffling its population’s genetic deck so thoroughly that it left clear traces—even in the genomes of today’s most isolated tribes.

In recent years, genetic studies of modern Indians have provided a host of new insights into the ancient history of this sprawling nation, which harbors nearly one-sixth of the world’s population. A key finding, reported in 2009 by a team led by geneticist David Reich of Harvard Medical School in Boston, was that most Indians today are descendants of two major population groups: Ancestral North Indians (ANI), who probably migrated into the subcontinent 8000 or more years ago from the Middle East, Central Asia, and Europe; and Ancestral South Indians (ASI), who were native to the region and had been there much longer. The study also showed that these two groups began to mix at some point in the past, although just when was not clear.

Reich and his colleagues teamed up with researchers from the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology in Hyderabad, India, to take a much closer look at the genetics of modern Indians. Using both newly generated and previously published genetic data from 571 people representing 73 ethnic and language groups, 71 from India and two from Pakistan (which prior to Indian independence from British rule in 1947 was considered part of India), the team analyzed the genetic differences among the subjects using several powerful statistical methods. The analysis included nearly 500,000 genetic markers on the subjects’ DNA.

The results, reported online today in The American Journal of Human Genetics, paint a complex picture: Beginning about 4200 years ago, ANI and ASI populations, which previously had kept mostly separate, began mating together, a flurry of intermarriage that probably lasted more than 2 millennia. Then, beginning about 1900 years ago or somewhat later, mating patterns shifted dramatically. Local populations became entrenched, eschewing intermarriage with other groups and adopting a cultural pattern of what researchers call endogamy, the practice of marrying only within an ethnic or social group.

“There was a major demographic transformation in India from a region where mixture was pervasive to one in which it is very rare because of a shift to endogamy,” says lead author Priya Moorjani, a geneticist at Harvard Medical School.

The traces of this alternating pattern can be clearly seen in the genomes of modern Indians today, the study finds. For example, the percentage of ANI ancestry ranges from a high of 71% in the Pathan ethnic group of northern India to a low of 17% in the Paniya group of southwest India, meaning that the degree of ancient admixture is still measurable and significant in even the most isolated and endogamous ethnic groups.

“The most remarkable aspect of the ANI-ASI mixture is how pervasive it was, in the sense that it has left its mark on nearly every group in India,” Moorjani and her co-workers write.

What accounts for this pattern? The team points out that the period of intermarriage overlaps with a time of huge social upheavals in India, including the collapse of the ancient Indus civilization—which thrived on the Indian subcontinent between about 2600 B.C.E. and 1900 B.C.E.—as well as large-scale population movements and the rise of the Vedic religion, the predecessor of modern Hinduism. But after 1900 years ago, India’s caste system became a major cultural force, the team concludes, based on its new genetic findings and confirmed by evidence from ancient religious texts. The system rigidly defined four social classes, with the Brahmans at the top and the Sudras at the bottom. Intermarriage was not allowed between them. The Rig-Veda, India’s oldest surviving text and a founding document of ancient Hinduism, does not mention the caste system in its earliest sections, probably written some 3000 years ago; only much later are references to it found.

“The bulk of the Rig-Veda describes a society in which there is substantial movement among groups,” Moorjani points out. The four-caste system is only mentioned in an appendix written much later, she says, consistent with the genetic evidence.

The study is “carefully and cautiously crafted,” says Toomas Kivisild, a population geneticist at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, and has “major significance for understanding the complex demographic processes in India that led to the endogamous rules of the caste system.”

Lynn Jorde, a geneticist at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, calls the results “intriguing,” but cautions that they need to be confirmed with a larger number of samples from even more regions of the Indian subcontinent, as well as with the use of complete DNA sequences from the entire genomes of all the individuals studied.

The team agrees that more needs to be done and suggests that ancient DNA studies of prehistoric burials—which would give scientists a finer grained picture of population mixing in the ancient past—could be the next step in this ongoing research.
comments included:

ANI went black and didn't come back

Last edited by Pamela Ross; May 22nd, 2014 at 12:43 PM.
Old May 15th, 2014 #3
Pamela Ross
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 4,317
Pamela Ross

August 08, 2013

Major admixture in India took place ~4.2-1.9 thousand years ago (Moorjani et al. 2013)

A new paper on the topic of Indian population history has just appeared in the American Journal of Human Genetics. In previous work it was determined that Indians trace their ancestry to two major groups, Ancestral North Indians (ANI) (= West Eurasians of some kind), and Ancestral South Indians (ASI) (= distant relatives of Andaman Islanders, existing today only in admixed form).
The new paper demonstrates that admixture between these two groups took place ~4.2-1.9 thousand years ago.

The authors caution about this evidence of admixture:
It is also important to emphasize what our study has not shown. Although we have documented evidence for mixture in India between about 1,900 and 4,200 years BP, this does not imply migration from West Eurasia into India during this time. On the contrary, a recent study that searched for West Eurasian groups most closely related to the ANI ancestors of Indians failed to find any evidence for shared ancestry between the ANI and groups in West Eurasia within the past 12,500 years3 (although it is possible that with further sampling and new methods such relatedness might be detected).
An alternative possibility that is also consistent with our data is that the ANI and ASI were both living in or near South Asia for a substantial period prior to their mixture

ancient india, india, indo-aryan, indo-european, white genes


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