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Thread: Pontic Greek Results

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erikl86 View Post
    I did mean to a degree, plus Cypriots and Cappadocian Greeks seem to show elevated affinity to North Mesopotamians (aka Assyrians) in similarity maps, Andrew here can vouch with his own family maps.

    Also, I'm not the first one to say it, in fact it is backed by peer reviewed study published by Haber et al. (2013), saying:

    "Levantine populations [can be split to] two branches: one leading to Europeans and Central Asians that includes Lebanese, Armenians, Cypriots, Druze and Jews, as well as Turks, Iranians and Caucasian populations; and a second branch composed of Palestinians, Jordanians, Syrians, as well as North Africans, Ethiopians, Saudis, and Bedouins."

    So Cypriots do show some degree of affinity with Armenians - which IMO is some degree of gene flow in the Fertile Crescent axis. These were also the last remaining Levantine regions to still adhere to Christianity until fairly recently.

    Also I believe Cypriots and Cappadocian Greeks affinity is the result of both shared Greek admixture and Anatolian admixture, while indeed Cypriots seem to have significant Levantine admixture as well (observed both autosomally and uniparentally by Heraclides et al. 2017).
    The bulk of Southeastern Europe has affinity with Armenians, because there appears to be Armenia EBA type mixture throughout the Mediterranean, Balkans and Italy as far as Tuscany. Considering Armenians can be modelled, understandably, as heavily Armenia EBA with some extra Neolithic European and Neolithic Levantine related ancestries it isn't surprising that affinity can be observed. Roman era gene flow is also a possibility and quite likely (in some areas), but in my opinion it's simply due to general Armenia EBA/CHG type stuff mediated through Anatolia BA/Mycenaean type populations across the Mediterranean during the Bronze Age and not recent admixing between Greek and Armenian populations. I believe this quite simply because the Armenian stuff appears to be quite uniform. Mycenaean's could be modelled as around 20%+ Armenian-like, and Minoans around that also from what I remember.

    Also take into account modern Armenians have Neolithic European type ancestry, and you've got a population that is basically a Caucasus, Neolithic European, Steppe and Neolithic Levantine mixture ancestrally - which would explain why affinity is elevated between populations like Cypriot Greeks, Anatolian Greeks and various Italian populations with Armenians because they all share input from similar ancestral sources.

    But this like you said is to a degree, they're completely different populations in the grand scheme of things and it shows in the PCA's.

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  3. #12
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    MDLP world-22 has Azov Greek samples. AFAIK Rumaic Pontic Greeks (Greeks of southern Crimea), who later were moved Azov sea during Catherine II rule. Later from Azov some were deported to Kazakhstan during Stalin rule.


    I plotted their data once. I can't remember where I posted the plot. If memory serves me correctly they were similar north caucasians

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    Can anybody show me the most accurate or updated PCA charts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by NarLFC View Post
    Can anybody show me the most accurate or updated PCA charts?
    Ph2ter does G25 PCA's over at his thread in the Ancient DNA section, he has both a European PCA and a World PCA (the World one contains ancients also).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrewid View Post
    Btw, the Mediterranean continuum idea was not created on this forum. Sarno and her colleagues spoke about it in their paper on southern Italy (Ancient and recent admixture layers in Sicily and Southern Italy trace multiple migration routes along the Mediterranean), but other geneticists have spoken about it to.
    The Mediterranean continuum idea originated with Sarno, yes. She seems to have proposed, in my view quite accurately, that there is a continuum that bridges mainland Greece/Albania/Central Italy with the Levant, and those intermediate populations are Sicilians, South Italians, Cretans, Aegean islanders, and to an even greater extent, Cypriots.

    As far as Dodecanese and Aegean islanders, since they have been brought up, I must point out that it would be very difficult to get an accurate sample of them because they vary significantly depending on the island and how much recent mainland Greek input is on those islands. Some islands, like Crete and some Dodecanese, are more firmly plotting with southern Italy, though possibly a bit more "Caucasus" than them and without the North African input that Sicilians have, but other islanders, particularly Cyclades and some North Aegean islands and even the smaller Dodecanese islands like Patmos and Tilos, seem to have been impacted by migration from mainland Greece which, in turn, brought low but genetically significant levels of Slavic admixture.

    What I think is necessary is to have four Aegean islands samples: Crete, North Aegean, Cyclades, and Dodecanese, with samples in them from all the islands. I think we will find a bridge from mainland Greece through to Cyprus that overlaps with various parts of southern Italy as well.

    There is nothing, to the best of my knowledge though that would bridge the gap between mainland Greece and Pontians.
    Last edited by Sikeliot; 11-25-2018 at 09:29 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sikeliot View Post
    There is nothing, to the best of my knowledge though that would bridge the gap between mainland Greece and Pontians.
    Central Anatolian Greeks bridge the gap between the mainland and Pontus.

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    Also going to add, the Sarno study also showed different Western Jewish groups plotted similarly to SE Europeans -- Ashkenazim close to Crete, and North African Jews are plotting close to, but more Middle Eastern than, some Sicilian samples like the Palermitans.

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    For some inexplicable reason, Sarno forwent including any Lebanese samples in her paper, so the gap in her PCA between the Greek islands and the Levant looks bigger than it actually is. Unfortunately, it's not entirely clear where the "AEI" (apparently Aegean/Anatolian Greeks) in that study actually came from. The supplement gives no specifics. AEI could just be an average of several different island groups + some Western Anatolian Greeks (who seem to be similar to islanders anyway), but there's no telling.

    Stamatoyannopoulos presented a lot of samples from Pontics, Cappadocians, and Western Anatolian Greeks in his unfortunately rather problematic paper on Slavic admixture in Greeks:

     


    Panel B: The green triangles represent Western Anatolian Greeks, and they seem to be situated where you'd expect Aegean islanders to plot, but the presentation here isn't the most helpful. I'd like to see how they fare on a generic West Eurasian PCA with Cypriots, Lebanese, Armenians, etc., instead of just an intra-Greek PCA. I have previously conveyed my hypothesis that medieval Greek populations in the west of Anatolia probably blended smoothly into the Greek populations living in more easterly parts of the peninsula. Turkification of the tableland and maybe even Aegean gene flow into western Anatolia have obscured what I predict was a continuous cline of Aegean-like to Armenian-like Greeks in the Middle Ages.

    Quote Originally Posted by LTG View Post
    Central Anatolian Greeks bridge the gap between the mainland and Pontus.
    Indeed, modern Central Anatolian Greeks plot between Cretans and Pontics in the Global25 PCA, but the gaps between the groups in question aren't trivial. There are, of course, many modern Turkish populations situated between the traditional territories of the Asiatic Greeks being discussed, and all but the Trabzon Turks have Central Asian admixture. It is no wonder then that a medieval continuum connecting European Greeks to West Asian Greeks would cease to exist with the arrival of the Seljuks and subsequent segmentation of relict Greeks in Anatolia. That's just my opinion, of course, but it seems reasonable. Maybe there were big gaps between these Greeks even before the Turks, but I just can't see what barriers would've existed to prevent admixture between Byzantines in Asia Minor who directly neighbored each other. There's structure in North, Central, and Southern Italians, but they still blend together at their edges. I think this was almost certainly the case in the medieval Greek world, too. It might have existed long before the Byzantines, too, since these areas had all been Hellenized well before the Middle Ages.

    More generally, the gaps between SE Europe and West Asia keep getting smaller with more data. We already know there are outlying Cypriots who cluster closer to the Levant than others. I think if we had 500 samples from each East Med and Levantine population (like we do with Ashkenazi Jews in the Global25), there would be no gap at all between the Greek islands and the Levant. And thanks to Alkaevli, we now know that Alawites (Nusayri) in Turkey (and presumably in Syria, too) are even closer to Cypriots and Syrian Jews than the Lebanese are:

    Alkaevli's PCA:
     


    Erik's PCA:
     


    Really amazing stuff. Alawites were a completely unknown quantity until those samples were posted. Erik has also done a fantastic job getting us Romaniote and Syrian Jew samples to look over. Not to mention a few samples of Levantine Christian minorities like Melkites and so on. I'm proud to be part of a forum that beats the academic papers to the punch on a lot of interesting populations.

    It would be nice to have the raw genotype data from Sarno and Stamatoyannopoulos, if it's even useable for our purposes. I assume Sikeliot has already asked the authors. Western Anatolian Greeks, Grikos, and other inappreciable populations probably aren't high on the list of priorities for most labs, so we have to be proactive in requesting data from scientists who do study niche groups but don't have a policy of automatically sharing their data publicly.
    Last edited by Michalis Moriopoulos; 11-26-2018 at 05:34 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michalis Moriopoulos View Post
    For some inexplicable reason, Sarno forwent including any Lebanese samples in her paper, so the gap in her PCA between the Greek islands and the Levant looks bigger than it actually is. Unfortunately, it's not entirely clear where the "AEI" (apparently Aegean/Anatolian Greeks) in that study actually came from. The supplement gives no specifics. AEI could just be an average of several different island groups + some Western Anatolian Greeks (who seem to be similar to islanders anyway), but there's no telling.
    Someone messaged her to ask and I think she said Dodecanese and western Anatolian Greeks.

    On the PCA plot for that study, the Aegean islanders seemed to shift somewhat toward the Caucasus while some of the Sicilian samples (Palermo, Catania, and I believe Agrigento) shifted toward North African Jews. Even with Lebanese included, there would be a gap between both the Aegean islanders/Sicilians and the Levant.

    Still, as we see from GEDmatch, both South Italians and Aegean islanders (minus the ones in both groups with excess Norman, North Italian, or Slavic ancestry) are closer to Lebanese and Syrians than they are to many other Southern Europeans such as Iberians, so the gap is not that large to begin with.

    But here is the PCA plot.. even with Lebanese included, the Aegean islands (the two dark red dots below the fire engine red Sicilian cluster) and Sicilians would be somewhat far from Levantines. Even Cypriots look far (and closer to Sicilians/Cretans).


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    Quote Originally Posted by Michalis Moriopoulos View Post
    For some inexplicable reason, Sarno forwent including any Lebanese samples in her paper, so the gap in her PCA between the Greek islands and the Levant looks bigger than it actually is. Unfortunately, it's not entirely clear where the "AEI" (apparently Aegean/Anatolian Greeks) in that study actually came from. The supplement gives no specifics. AEI could just be an average of several different island groups + some Western Anatolian Greeks (who seem to be similar to islanders anyway), but there's no telling.

    Stamatoyannopoulos presented a lot of samples from Pontics, Cappadocians, and Western Anatolian Greeks in his unfortunately rather problematic paper on Slavic admixture in Greeks:
    Quote Originally Posted by Michalis Moriopoulos View Post
    Really amazing stuff. Alawites were a completely unknown quantity until those samples were posted. Erik has also done a fantastic job getting us Romaniote and Syrian Jew samples to look over. Not to mention a few samples of Levantine Christian minorities like Melkites and so on. I'm proud to be part of a forum that beats the academic papers to the punch on a lot of interesting populations.
    While Sarno et al. (and Stamatoyannopoulos et al.) are one of those papers that all of us here crave to see much more of, and usually completely enforce or bust theories that are thrown around by many of us until those papers are out, I find it really upsetting that they make somewhat silly but critical mistakes like the ones you've mentioned, like for example in Sarno et al., the fact they left out Levantines. Another problematic example at least in the case of Sarno et al., is how can one show admixture bars for Sicilians and Maltese and not include North African component? (I think it was Davidski who first raised this issue at the time). Another example, although a bit off topic and not discussing Greeks, is the potentially most revealing peer reviewed study to date on the origins of Ashkenazi Jews, by Xue et al. (2017), presuming to show when and where from the ancestral European admixture of Ashkenazi Jews derived. Then you read in the paper they've constructed the South European reference group from Greeks, South Italians and Bergamo North Italians , and while one might assume they didn't attempt to dwell into such high resolutions and simply present general South European admixture in Ashkenazi Jews, you then see they actually took the time and separated North Levantines from South Middle Easterners in their reference groups.

    This is really frustrating, but I think we'll just have to wait for better papers in the future. Hopefully, few of them have the time to read some of what many here write - as you said, this is truly an amazing forum and I share you feeling of pride to be a part of.



    It would be nice to have the raw genotype data from Sarno and Stamatoyannopoulos, if it's even useable for our purposes. I assume Sikeliot has already asked the authors. Western Anatolian Greeks, Grikos, and other inappreciable populations probably aren't high on the list of priorities for most labs, so we have to be proactive in requesting data from scientists who do study niche groups but don't have a policy of automatically sharing their data publicly.
    I've also addressed Dr. Sarno, with no luck as of yet I'm afraid.
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