Ancient DNA from a pre‐Columbian Amerindian population

Anne C. Stone, Mark Stoneking

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

133 Scopus citations


Ancient DNA was obtained from skeletal remains from the Norris Farms #36 cemetery, a pre‐Columbian archeological site in central Illinois that dates to A. D. 1300. Four mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) markers were analyzed that delineate the four primary mtDNA lineages found in contemporary Amerindian populations. mtDNA types were determined for 50 individuals; 49 belonged to one of these four lineages. One lineage occurred only in males, suggesting an immigration of maternally related males into this community. There was no significant spatial patterning of mtDNA lineages within the cemetery. This survey of ancient DNA variation in a preColumbian population supports the view that the initial colonization of the New World comprised just four primary mtDNA lineages. © 1993 Wiley‐Liss, Inc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)463-471
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of physical anthropology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Human evolution
  • New World colonization
  • mtDNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anatomy
  • Anthropology


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