Monday, December 03, 2007

More on Native American DNA

Matt and Chas both sent me this piece last week on another DNA study that shows Native Americans are most closely related to peoples in Siberia, indicating that is their point of origin. This isn't exactly news, but is another corroborating study apparently done on a larger scale than most in the past.

On a related topic, some of you may recall this post I did early last year that discussed the problems the Mormon Church was having reconciling the DNA evidence of Siberian origins with their church doctrine that Native Americans are descended from a Jewish tribe that emigrated here about 600 BC. Well this article I saw this morning says they have given up. The Book of Mormon has been revised:

"The old introduction read that, after thousands of years, all the Israelites were destroyed except one branch, known as the Lamanites, and these survivors were 'the principal ancestors of the American Indians.'

The new version reads that the Lamanites 'are among the ancestors of American Indians.'"

As I said last year, I don't think this will really mean much to the faith of the average LDS member, but I find it an interesting concession.


prairie mary said...

A factoid that has stuck with me is that Native Americans came in three "waves" of population that have sort of stacked from south towards the north. This means that the ones that look like Chavez are farther to the south and have evolved farther from the original. Then there is a middle ground and then the Siberian wave -- not like Inuit, which stayed circumpolar all the way around the continents, but like the people around Lake Baikal. Certainly, when I see movies or photos of those regions, I almost see Blackfeet faces I can recognize.

Dunno how accurate this memory is.

Prairie Mary

Isaac Nichols アイザック ニコルス said...

A recent book titled "1491" talks about the growing scientific evidence that there were lots of people in the Americas before Colombus and if I remember correctly suggests that some South American tribes may even have come from Africa...? I wonder if the above study concludes that all Native Americans (North and South) have origins in Siberia?