The ancestral home of native Americans found on lake Baikal

The population of people who became the ancestors of the native Americans, formed not later than 14 thousand years ago near lake Baikal in the result of a long mixing of ancient Siberian and far Eastern populations. An article about this international team of archaeologists and paleogenetics published in the journal Cell.

Still the ancestral home of native Americans was considered of North-Eastern Siberia (in particular, the basin of the Kolyma river), from where they crossed over to Alaska by land before the formation of the Bering Strait that divided America and Eurasia some 10 thousand years ago.

Scientists from Germany,, South Korea and South Africa, with the participation of Johannes Krause (Johannes Krause) from the Institute of world history, max Planck Society examined DNA samples from 19 people who lived in Siberia during the period 14 to 4 million years ago. The oldest of them — a tooth found in a cave Paleolithic site Ust-Kyakhta-3 South of lake Baikal. The genome revealed ancestral components, establishing its kinship with the native Americans. The same components are present in the genomes of people who lived several thousand years later in North-Eastern Siberia.

The researchers found that the surroundings of lake Baikal in the period under review was the contact area where mixed media of at least two of the genomes, an ancient severoevropejskogo (Ancient North Eurasian) and northeast Asia (Northeastern Asian). The first is associated with the cultures of the early bronze age, the second with the Neolithic.

The remains of two of the 14 people who lived in the Baikal region for about 4 and a half thousand years ago, scientists discovered traces of the bacteria Yersinia pestis (Yersinia pestis). This particular type of bacteria was genetically closest to the one that was discovered one person who lived around the same time at the other end of Eurasia in the Baltic region (corded ware culture). This indicates the existence of contacts at such a great distance in this distant past.

In 2015 paleogenetic establishedthat the first wave of migrants from Siberia came to America no earlier than 23 thousand years ago. In 2019, scientists have modeled three waves of migration from the South to the North-East of Siberia for the last 31 a thousand years.

Artem Efimov

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