Archiver > GENEALOGY-DNA > 2010-11 > 1290474871

From: steven perkins <>
Subject: [DNA] Article: Ancient Local Evolution of African mtDNA Haplogroupsin Tunisian Berber Populations
Date: Mon, 22 Nov 2010 20:14:31 -0500

Full text:

Human Biology 82(4):367-384. 2010
doi: 10.3378/027.082.0402

Ancient Local Evolution of African mtDNA Haplogroups in Tunisian
Berber Populations

Sabeh Frigi,1 Lotfi Cherni,1 Karima Fadhlaoui-Zid,1 and Amel Benammar-Elgaaied1

1 Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, Immunology, and Human Pathology,
Faculty of Sciences of Tunis, University El Manar, 2092 Tunis,

The first two authors contributed equally to this paper.

Our objective is to highlight the age of sub-Saharan gene flows in
North Africa and particularly in Tunisia. Therefore we analyzed in a
broad phylogeographic context sub-Saharan mtDNA haplogroups of
Tunisian Berber populations considered representative of ancient
settlement. More than 2,000 sequences were collected from the
literature, and networks were constructed. The results show that the
most ancient haplogroup is L3*, which would have been introduced to
North Africa from eastern sub-Saharan populations around 20,000 years
ago. Our results also point to a less ancient western sub-Saharan gene
flow to Tunisia, including haplogroups L2a and L3b. This conclusion
points to an ancient African gene flow to Tunisia before 20,000 BP.
These findings parallel the more recent findings of both archaeology
and linguistics on the prehistory of Africa. The present work suggests
that sub-Saharan contributions to North Africa have experienced
several complex population processes after the occupation of the
region by anatomically modern humans. Our results reveal that Berber
speakers have a foundational biogeographic root in Africa and that
deep African lineages have continued to evolve in supra-Saharan

Received: January 16, 2010; Accepted: June 2, 2010


Steven C. Perkins
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