Simonson Tibet Dataset

Recently, I discovered that the paper Genetic Evidence for High-Altitude Adaptation in Tibet by Tatum S. Simonson, Yingzhong Yang, Chad D. Huff, Haixia Yun, Ga Qin, David J. Witherspoon, Zhenzhong Bai, Felipe R. Lorenzo, Jinchuan Xing, Lynn B. Jorde, Josef T. Prchal, RiLi Ge has its genotyping data online.

It contains 31 Tibetans from Madou county in Qinghai province. The chip is Affymetrix and there are 868,146 SNPs, which means it has a good overlap with Reich et al and Xing et al and also with my reference 3.

I ran reference 3 K=11 admixture on this dataset. Here are the individual results:

The average is as follows:

S Asian E Asian Siberian
1% 84% 14%

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  1. This is excellent. In a way it fills in a gap of human genetic variation we previously had. Some of the individuals have specks of Onge, South-Asian and European. While the first two can be easily explained by geographic proximity, the European is interesting. Small, but real contact with the IE-speaking Tocharians, perhaps?

  2. Maduo County, that is, or Matö in Tibetan.

    That's in Golok, which is culturally a heavily Tibetan, with a tradition of fiercely independent warrior culture. Less Mongol and Muslim influence than the areas immediately to the north, but, on the other hand, Mongols could sure get around sometimes.

    This area would have been conquered by Tibetans about 1300 years ago and more or less gradually Tibetanised after that. What would be really interesting would be find out, for the self-identifying Tibetan population living there now, how much of their genetic patrimony comes from those Tibetan conquerors and how much comes from whoever was living there before.

    This seems like about the right area for so-called Qiangs to have lived. Beckwith thinks the original Qiangs were Indo-European speakers. So maybe that's your European genetic contribution right there.

  3. Where the wild clines aren’t | Genetics Source - pingback on March 13, 2012 at 12:00 pm
  4. Interesting stuff.

    Regarding the European component how much of the Northern European component among modern Indo-Iranian speakers is the result of admixture with Indo-Iranian speaking tribes as opposed to how much is a result of admixture with altaic/siberian nomads.


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