Two ancient human genomes reveal Polynesian ancestry among the indigenous Botocudos of Brazil


Understanding the peopling of the Americas remains an important and challenging question. Here, we present (14)C dates, and morphological, isotopic and genomic sequence data from two human skulls from the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, part of one of the indigenous groups known as 'Botocudos'. We find that their genomic ancestry is Polynesian, with no detectable Native American component. Radiocarbon analysis of the skulls shows that the individuals had died prior to the beginning of the 19th century. Our findings could either represent genomic evidence of Polynesians reaching South America during their Pacific expansion, or European-mediated transport.

DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2014.09.078

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@article{Malaspinas2014TwoAH, title={Two ancient human genomes reveal Polynesian ancestry among the indigenous Botocudos of Brazil}, author={Anna-Sapfo Malaspinas and Oscar Lao and Hannes Schroeder and Morten Rasmussen and Maanasa Raghavan and Ida Moltke and Paula F. Campos and Francisca Santana Sagredo and Simon Rasmussen and Vanessa Faria Gonçalves and Anders Albrechtsen and Morten E Allentoft and Philip L. F. Johnson and Mingkun Li and Silvia Reis and Danilo Vicensotto Bernardo and Michael DeGiorgio and Ana T. Duggan and Murilo Q R Bastos and Yong Wang and Jesper T. Stenderup and Jos{\'e} V{\'i}ctor Moreno-Mayar and S\oren Brunak and Thomas Sicheritz-Pont{\'e}n and Emily Hodges and Gregory J. Hannon and Ludovic Orlando and T. Douglas Price and Jeffrey D Jensen and Rasmus Nielsen and Jan Heinemeier and Jesper Wolff Olsen and Cl{\'a}udia Rodrigues-Carvalho and Marta Miraz{\'o}n Lahr and Walter Alves Neves and Manfred Kayser and Tom Higham and Mark Stoneking and S{\'e}rgio D. J. Pena and Eske Willerslev}, journal={Current Biology}, year={2014}, volume={24}, pages={R1035-R1037} }