March 28, 2011

Relationship between Iran and the Arabian peninsula

J Hum Genet. 2011 Mar;56(3):235-46. Epub 2011 Feb 17.

Mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosomal stratification in Iran: relationship between Iran and the Arabian Peninsula.

Terreros MC, Rowold DJ, Mirabal S, Herrera RJ.

Modern day Iran is strategically located in the tri-continental corridor uniting Africa, Europe and Asia. Several ethnic groups belonging to distinct religions, speaking different languages and claiming divergent ancestries inhabit the region, generating a potentially diverse genetic reservoir. In addition, past pre-historical and historical events such as the out-of-Africa migrations, the Neolithic expansion from the Fertile Crescent, the Indo-Aryan treks from the Central Asian steppes, the westward Mongol expansions and the Muslim invasions may have chiseled their genetic fingerprints within the genealogical substrata of the Persians. On the other hand, the Iranian perimeter is bounded by the Zagros and Albrez mountain ranges, and the Dasht-e Kavir and Dash-e Lut deserts, which may have restricted gene flow from neighboring regions. By utilizing high-resolution mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) markers and reanalyzing our previously published Y-chromosomal data, we have found a previously unexplored, genetic connection between Iranian populations and the Arabian Peninsula, likely the result of both ancient and recent gene flow. Furthermore, the regional distribution of mtDNA haplogroups J, I, U2 and U7 also provides evidence of barriers to gene flow posed by the two major Iranian deserts and the Zagros mountain range.



Unknown said...

Arabia is right below the whole southern extent of Iran, only separated by the Gulf. The shortest distance from Arabia to Iran is from the area of Kuwait, and the tip of Oman. As a comparison; the Mediterranean separates North Africa and Southern Europe by a large distance, yet there is significant affinities in the two population.

In the stone reliefs of Persepolis, capital of the first Iranian empire, the Persians were phenotypically indistinguishable from other Near Eastern groups like the Babylonians, with dark, tightly curled beards and prominent noses. The Bactrians, who were supposed to be the "purest" Iranians had flat faces, straight hair, and overall Mongoloid phenotype.

I think its about time we reanalyze our old perceptions of population affinities in Central Asia and Iran. And we start to considering the old Aryan state an eastern genetic extension of the old Middle Eastern races. To their north were probably already admixed populations who adopted IE language and culture. The so called blonde or redhead Iranians appear to be more recent contributions from Russia and Europe, in the similar way we see them in Lebanon, but are not part of the founding populations. [If this post is repeated, please delete the extras]

Palisto said...

I have never seen any evidence that Iranians migrated into Iran from Northeast.
The easier explanation is that all Iranians are originally from Northwest-Iran.
An alternative hypothesis would be that Iranians came originally from the Caucasus region and migrated south into Northwest-Iran.

Medians, the first described Iranians, are from Northwest-Iran.
Based on Arabian sources, Balochis were deported from Northwest-Iran into Southeast-Iran by the Sassanid emperor Khosrow I (531-579).
Gilakis and Mazaradanis are also originally from Northwest-Iran and were deported by Neo-Assyrians to the South of the Caspian Sea (8. century BC).
Azeris are still living in Northwest-Iran and originally spoke an Iranian language.
Kurds are Iranians and they also still live in Northwest-Iran.
Persians, the second described Iranians in history, are from a region called Parsua in Northwestiran. Persians are originally not from the Fars Province (Southwest-Iran).
Read here,
"The Persians are mentioned for the first time in Assyrian texts from the ninth century B.C. An inscription by the Assyrian king Shalmaneser III, which was written around 843 B.C., mentions the region of Parsua...
It has been assumed that around 800 B.C. the Persians detached themselves from the Median tribes and, faced with the onslaught of the Urartians and Manneans, moved south into valleys of the Zagros mountains and then gradually migrated further to the southeast. "

Based on Eratosthenes, the land of Ariana was between the Taurus mountains (East-Turkey) to the Indus river (Pakistan).

sidoroffs said...

Dear Dienekes,

Can you please say what exactly are they calling "a previously unexplored, genetic connection between Iranian populations and the Arabian Peninsula"?

Andrew Oh-Willeke said...

@ sidoroffs

I share your frustration with these kinds of hide the ball abstracts that spend all their time stating the problem instead of reciting their findings to solve those problems.

aeolius said...

The Gulf has not been a permanent body of water. Rose and others suggest that during the ice age the Schatt continued in a watercourse (Ur-Schatt) running toward the Gulf of Oman. There may have been fertile wetlands and perhaps the origins of the marsh arabs.
Anyway there was no barrier between Arabia and Iran to separate polulations. While this theory has gotten seized by those explaining the Deluge and perhaps Garden of Eden, it has its own and scientific existance