Ancient DNA studies have always refreshed our understanding of the human past that cannot be tracked by modern DNA alone. Until recently, ancient mitochondrial genomic studies in East Asia were still very limited. Here, we retrieved the whole mitochondrial genome of an 8,400-year-old individual from Inner Mongolia, China. Phylogenetic analyses show that the individual belongs to a previously undescribed clade under haplogroup C5d that most probably originated in northern Asia and may have a very low frequency in extant populations that have not yet been sampled. We further characterized the demographic history of mitochondrial haplogroups C5 and C5d and found that C5 experienced a sharp increase in population size starting around 4,000 years before present, the time when intensive millet farming was developed by populations who are associated with the Lower Xiajiadian culture and was widely adopted in northern China. We caution that people related to haplogroup C5 may have added this farming technology to their original way of life and that the various forms of subsistence may have provided abundant food sources and further contributed to the increase in population size.
Wu, Xiyan; Ning, Chao; Bao, Qingchuan; Gao, Shizhu; Zhang, Fan; Wu, Sihao; Li, Tianjiao; Fan, Linyuan; Li, Tao; Yang, Xuan; Cai, Dawei; and Cui, Yinqiu
"Mitochondrial Genome of an 8,400-Year-Old Individual from Northern China Reveals a Novel Subclade under C5d,"
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Available at: https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/humbiol/vol91/iss1/3