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Spatial Assessment of Argentinean Genetic Admixture with Geographical Information Systems

NCJ Number
Forensic Science International: Genetics Volume: 5 Issue: 4 Dated: August 2011 Pages: 297-302
Amalia Diaz-Lacava; Maja Walier; Gustavo Penacino; Thomas F. Wienker; Max P. Baur
Date Published
August 2011
6 pages
In recent years there has been much attention to Argentinean population stratification.
The authors were interested in assessing population stratification from a geographical perspective and summarizing it in form of maps. They mapped the genetic admixture of the extant male population in central and northern Argentina on the basis of forensic Y-chromosomal haplotypes. The authors addressed the question which group of genetically similar individuals is predominant in this area. Haplotypes containing 7 Y-chromosomal short tandem repeat polymorphisms (Y-STRs), also known as microsatellites - DYS19, DYS389I, DYS389II, DYS390, DYS391, DYS392, DYS393 - were constructed for 145 individuals, recruited in 10 provinces. Ninety-seven distinct haplotypes were clustered into 4 clusters according to molecular distances. A genetic geostatistical analysis was conducted with the open-source geographical information system GRASS GIS. For each haplotype cluster, the according frequency was spatially interpolated over the total study area. Juxtaposing the interpolation surfaces, the authors screened point-wisely the maximal frequency as well as the label of the respective cluster. The screening results were combined in one summary map. The authors repeated this procedure for the second maximal frequencies. The resulting maps subdivide the study area into continuous regions comprising one predominant group of similar haplotypes. The first summary map divides the study area into three regions and the second summary map divides the area into four regions. The results of the analysis indicate that two groups of similar European haplotypes alternatively dominate the largest extension of the Argentinean territory. A third group, including South-American haplotypes, dominates the indigenous northwestern Argentinean area. The last group, including worldwide dispersed haplotypes, preponderates in frequency in second place in central Argentina. The findings confirm a widespread European paternal ancestry, a substantial Amerindian contribution in the northwest, as well as a considerable proportion of diverse paternal lineages. In this work, the authors further discuss these findings in reference to ethno-historical, genetic, and demographic information. (Published Abstract)