Tracking the Sexes by Their Genes

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Science  02 Mar 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5509, pp. 1733-1734
DOI: 10.1126/science.291.5509.1733

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By comparing data from maternally and paternally inherited DNA, researchers are finding that in our ancestral populations, men and women didn't always travel together. In some cases, the genes reveal how male explorers or warriors carried their genomes to distant places. But surprisingly, in general females seem to have stirred the genetic melting pot by dispersing their DNA more widely than their brothers dispersed theirs--perhaps as a result of thousands of years of moving to join their husbands' clans.