Genome-wide scan of 29,141 African Americans finds no evidence of selection since admixture
Gaurav Bhatia et al.
We scanned through the genomes of 29,141 African Americans, searching for loci where the average proportion of African ancestry deviates significantly from the genome-wide average. We failed to find any genome-wide significant deviations, and conclude that any selection in African Americans since admixture is sufficiently weak that it falls below the threshold of our power to detect it using a large sample size. These results stand in contrast to the findings of a recent study of selection in African Americans. That study, which had 15 times fewer samples, reported six loci with significant deviations. We show that the discrepancy is likely due to insufficient correction for multiple hypothesis testing in the previous study. The same study reported 14 loci that showed greater population differentiation between African Americans and Nigerian Yoruba than would be expected in the absence of natural selection. Four such loci were previously shown to be genome-wide significant and likely to be affected by selection, but we show that most of the 10 additional loci are likely to be false positives. Additionally, the most parsimonious explanation for the loci that have significant evidence of unusual differentiation in frequency between Nigerians and Africans Americans is selection in Africa prior to their forced migration to the Americas.