The genetic prehistory of southern Africa
Joseph K. Pickrell, Nick Patterson, Chiara Barbieri, Falko Berthold, Linda Gerlach, Mark Lipson, Po-Ru Loh, Tom Güldemann, Blesswell Kure, Sununguko Wata Mpoloka, Hirosi Nakagawa, Christfried Naumann, Joanna L. Mountain, Carlos D. Bustamante, Bonnie Berger, Brenna M. Henn, Mark Stoneking, David Reich, Brigitte Pakendorf
(Submitted on 23 Jul 2012)
The hunter-gatherer populations of southern and eastern Africa are known to harbor some of the most ancient human lineages, but their historical relationships are poorly understood. We report data from 22 populations analyzed at over half a million single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), using a genome-wide array designed for studies of history. The southern Africans-here called Khoisan-fall into two groups, loosely corresponding to the northwestern and southeastern Kalahari, which we show separated within the last 30,000 years. All individuals derive at least a few percent of their genomes from admixture with non-Khoisan populations that began 1,200 years ago. In addition, the Hadza, an east African hunter-gatherer population that speaks a language with click consonants, derive about a quarter of their ancestry from admixture with a population related to the Khoisan, implying an ancient genetic link between southern and eastern Africa.