News FocusGenetics

Y Chromosomes Point to Native American Adam

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Science  05 Mar 1999:
Vol. 283, Issue 5407, pp. 1439-1440
DOI: 10.1126/science.283.5407.1439

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Many of the native peoples around the Americas can trace their heritage back to a single founding father, according to a group of Argentine researchers. Three years ago these researchers, along with another group, discovered the traces of a single common ancestor in the Y chromosomes of native American men in South and Central America. Now, by tracing this ancestral father's influence throughout the Americas, they conclude Native American Adam lived roughly 20,000 years ago and is the common paternal ancestor of at least 85% of all native Americans in South America and almost half those in North America.