Genetic analysis of 7 medieval skeletons from the Aragonese Pyrenees

Núnez, Carolina; Sosa, Cecilia; Baeta, Miriam; Geppert, Maria; Turnbough, Meredith; Phillips, Nicole; Casalod, Yolanda; Bolea, Miguel; Roby, Rhonda; Budowle, Bruce; Martínez-Jarreta, Begona
June 2011
Croatian Medical Journal;Jun2011, Vol. 52 Issue 3, p336
Academic Journal
Aim To perform a genetic characterization of 7 skeletons from medieval age found in a burial site in the Aragonese Pyrenees. Methods Allele frequencies of autosomal short tandem repeats (STR) loci were determined by 3 different STR systems. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and Y-chromosome haplogroups were determined by sequencing of the hypervariable segment 1 of mtDNA and typing of phylogenetic Y chromosome single nucleotide polymorphisms (YSNP) markers, respectively. Possible familial relationships were also investigated. Results Complete or partial STR profiles were obtained in 3 of the 7 samples. Mitochondrial DNA haplogroup was determined in 6 samples, with 5 of them corresponding to the haplogroup H and 1 to the haplogroup U5a. Ychromosome haplogroup was determined in 2 samples, corresponding to the haplogroup R. In one of them, the sub-branch R1b1b2 was determined. mtDNA sequences indicated that some of the individuals could be maternally related, while STR profiles indicated no direct family relationships. Conclusions Despite the antiquity of the samples and great difficulty that genetic analyses entail, the combined use of autosomal STR markers, Y-chromosome informative SNPs, and mtDNA sequences allowed us to genotype a group of skeletons from the medieval age.


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