Peopling of India: Ancient DNA perspectives
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To reconstruct and explain patterns of genetic diversity of modern humans, understanding their past and present geneticprofile is crucial. While genomes of contemporary people can provide information about present day population structure,analysis of ancient genomes may provide unprecedented insights about the past demographic events that have shaped thecontemporary gene pool. Population genetics has recently witnessed an explosion in studies on ancient human populationhistories, primarily from Europe and America. South Asia has no representation in the ancient genomics literature, despitethe wealth of archaeological richness in the form of human skeletal remains that exist in collections all over the country.Representing one-fifth of present day humanity calls for understanding the demographic history of south Asia not merely asa prerequisite but as an urgent need to understand its genetic variations on a global scale. Although the overall picture istaking form, new archaeological and genetic information from the region has started to reveal a more complex scenario ofancient human migrations and admixtures than was ever known before. In this article, we discuss a meaningful insight onthe current status of ancient DNA (aDNA) research in India. We have also summarized a few but important aDNA studies,which have been successfully carried out in India. Furthermore, we have highlighted the potential opportunity of aDNAresearch in the Indian subcontinent.
Volume 48, 2023
Continuous Article Publishing mode
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