December 13, 2005

Y chromosomes of Norway

This should be of interest to Norwegians and those suspecting "Viking" ancestry.

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From the paper:
Haplogroup frequency distributions in the different Norwegian regions are presented (Fig. 1). The frequency of P*(xR1a) varied from 26% in the east to 45% in the south, BR*(xDE, J, N3, P) from 30% in the west to 42% in the south and R1a from 13% in the south to 32% in the middle. N3 was most frequent in the north (11%; 18.6% in the northernmost county Finnmark) and totally absent in the south. Haplogroup DE and J were rare in all regions. We observe a relatively high frequency of P*(xR1a) and R1a in the population sample from south-west and east, respectively.

Frequency of haplotypes:
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Uralic admixture in the non-Saami Norwegian population:
Haplogroup N3 has been interpreted as a signature of Uralic Finno-Ugric speaking males migrating to northern Scandinavia about 4000–5000 years ago [9], [17], [35] and [60]. In the present study, N3 is observed at 4% in the overall population and at 11% in the northern region corresponding to 150,000 and 50,000 inhabitants, respectively. These numbers exceed the total number of Saami inhabitants, which is officially recognized as about 50,000 ( In northern Norway, the N3 percentage is 18.6% in Finnmark, 8.6% in Troms and 8.4% in Nordland (which are the three northernmost counties—Nordland being located to the south of the other two (Supplementary Data Online, Fig. 2)). There is thus a considerable pool of Saami and/or Finnish Y-chromosomes in the Norwegian population and particularly in the north.

Also of interest is the discovery of a new haplogroup:
A new haplogroup, not described earlier, was found in a single sample. Deduced from its biallelic type, it might represent a new 12f2 deletion within haplogroup P*(xR1a). The haplogroup it defines has been given the temporary name P*(xR1a)/12f2c (M. Jobling personal communication). Its haplotype composition is 15-10-17-24-10-13-14-11,14-12. There are already two known 12f2 deletions within hgJ and hgD2.

Forensic Sci Int. 2005 Dec 6; [Epub ahead of print] Links

Geographical heterogeneity of Y-chromosomal lineages in Norway.

Dupuy BM, Stenersen M, Lu TT, Olaisen B.

Y-chromosomal variation at five biallelic markers (Tat, YAP, 12f2, SRY(10831) and 92R7) and nine multiallelic short tandem repeat (STR) loci (DYS19, DYS389I, DYS389II, DYS390, DYS391, DYS392, DYS393, DYS385I/II and DYS388) in a Norwegian population sample are presented. The material consists of 1766 unrelated males of Norwegian origin. The geographical distribution of the population sample reflects fairly well the population distribution around the year 1942, which is the median birth year of the index persons. Seven hundred and twenty-one different Y-STR haplotypes but 726 different lineages (Y-STRs plus biallelic markers) were encountered. We observed six known (P*(xR1a), BR(xDE, J, N3, P), R1a, N3, DE, J), and one previously undescribed haplogroup (probably a subgroup within haplogroup P*(xR1a)). Four of the haplogroups (P*(xR1a), BR(xDE, J, N3, P), R1a and N3) represented about 98% of the population sample. The analysis of population pairwise differences indicates that the Norwegian Y-chromosome distribution most closely resembles those observed in Iceland, Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. Within Norway, geographical substructuring was observed between regions and counties. The substructuring reflects to some extent the European Y-chromosome gradients, with higher frequency of P*(xR1a) in the south-west and of R1a in the east. Heterogeneity in major founder groups, geographical isolation, severe epidemics, historical trading links and population movements may have led to population stratification and have most probably contributed to the observed regional differences in distribution of haplotypes within two of the major haplogroups.


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