Freezer anthropology: new uses for old blood.


Archived blood fractions (plasma, settled red cells, white cells) have proved to be a rich and valuable source of DNA for human genetic studies. Large numbers of such samples were collected between 1960 and the present for protein and blood group studies, many of which are languishing in freezers or have already been discarded. More are discarded each year because the usefulness of these samples is not widely understood. Data from DNA derived from 10-35-year-old blood samples have been used to address the peopling of the New World and of the Pacific. Mitochondrial DNA haplotypes from studies using this source DNA support a single wave of migration into the New World (or a single source population for the New World), and that Mongolia was the likely source of the founding population. Data from Melanesia have shown that Polynesians are recent immigrants into the Pacific and did not arise from Melanesia.

Cite this paper

@article{Merriwether1999FreezerAN, title={Freezer anthropology: new uses for old blood.}, author={David Andrew Merriwether}, journal={Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological sciences}, year={1999}, volume={354 1379}, pages={121-9} }