In spite of the wealth of available cultural and archeological information as well as general interest in the Mayans, little is known about their genetics. In this study, for the first time, we attempt to alleviate this lacuna of knowledge by comprehensively investigating the Y chromosome composition of contemporary Mayan populations throughout their domain. To accomplish this, five geographically targeted and ethnically distinct Mayan populations are investigated using Y-SNP and Y-STR markers. Findings: overall, the Mayan populations as a group are highly homogeneous, basically made up of only two autochthonous haplogroups, Q1a2a1a1*-M3 and Q1a2a1*-L54. Although the Y-STR data illustrates diversity, this diversity, for the most part, is uniformly distributed among geographically distant Mayan populations. Similar haplotypes among populations, abundance of singletons and absence of population partitioning within networks among Mayan populations suggest recent population expansion and substantial gene flow within the Mayan dominion, possibly due to the development of agriculture, the establishment of interacting City–State systems and commerce.
- David Perez-Benedico, Joel La Salvia, Zhaoshu Zeng, Giselle A Herrera, Ralph Garcia-Bertrand and Rene J Herrera (2016). Mayans: a Y chromosome perspective. European Journal of Human Genetics, In press, In press.
Peoples: Mayans | Places: South America | Topics: Q-L54 and Q-M3 | DNA Type: Y-SNP and Y-STR