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    The influence of natural barriers in shaping the genetic structure of Maharashtra populations

    Reference Type: Journal Article

    Record Number: 255

    Author: K. Thangaraj, B. P. Naidu, F. Crivellaro, R. Tamang, S. Upadhyay, V. K. Sharma, A. G. Reddy, S. R. Walimbe, G. Chaubey, T. Kivisild and L. Singh

    Year: 2010

    Title: The influence of natural barriers in shaping the genetic structure of Maharashtra populations

    Journal: PLoS One

    Volume: 5

    Issue: 12

    Pages: e15283

    Epub Date: 2010/12/29

    Short Title: The influence of natural barriers in shaping the genetic structure of Maharashtra populations

    ISSN: 1932-6203 (Electronic)

    DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0015283,

    Accession Number: 21187967

    Abstract: BACKGROUND: The geographical position of Maharashtra state makes it rather essential to study the dispersal of modern humans in South Asia. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain the cultural, linguistic and geographical affinity of the populations living in Maharashtra state with other South Asian populations. The genetic origin of populations living in this state is poorly understood and hitherto been described at low molecular resolution level. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To address this issue, we have analyzed the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) of 185 individuals and NRY (non-recombining region of Y chromosome) of 98 individuals belonging to two major tribal populations of Maharashtra, and compared their molecular variations with that of 54 South Asian contemporary populations of adjacent states. Inter and intra population comparisons reveal that the maternal gene pool of Maharashtra state populations is composed of mainly South Asian haplogroups with traces of east and west Eurasian haplogroups, while the paternal haplogroups comprise the South Asian as well as signature of near eastern specific haplogroup J2a. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our analysis suggests that Indian populations, including Maharashtra state, are largely derived from Paleolithic ancient settlers; however, a more recent ( approximately 10 Ky older) detectable paternal gene flow from west Asia is well reflected in the present study. These findings reveal movement of populations to Maharashtra through the western coast rather than mainland where Western Ghats-Vindhya Mountains and Narmada-Tapti rivers might have acted as a natural barrier. Comparing the Maharastrian populations with other South Asian populations reveals that they have a closer affinity with the South Indian than with the Central Indian populations.

    Notes: Thangaraj, Kumarasamy, Naidu, B Prathap, Crivellaro, Federica, Tamang, Rakesh, Upadhyay, Shashank, Sharma, Varun Kumar, Reddy, Alla G, Walimbe, S R, Chaubey, Gyaneshwer, Kivisild, Toomas, Singh, Lalji, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, United States, PloS one, PLoS One. 2010 Dec 20;5(12):e15283.,

    Author Address: Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad, India. thangs@ccmb.res.in

    Language: eng