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Peopling North America

28 June 2010

From the nature of the title it is obvious this is a study with a focus on North America – and basically, it has been found that mtDNA amongst Native Americans is more varied than earlier studies claimed. It also adhers to the favoured North American position on the date of entry (from Beringia), between 18 and 15,000 years ago (at the end of the Ice Age). This heavily loaded statement, the consensus opinion, is an influence on the arguments made – so one has to read between the lines. However, the new findings do seem to show that genetics is not as cut and dried as it has been presented sometimes – just as Neanderthal genes are now being found in Homo sapiens, as far afield as New Guinea and western Europe, so too is evidence accumulating that a number of migrations into the Americas occurred – on diverse occasions. The story can be accessed at www.physorg,com/print196952527.html and at www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/06/100628170926.htm in which it is alleged there are now up to 15 founding maternal lineages present.

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