Rxivist logo

Rxivist combines preprints from bioRxiv with data from Twitter to help you find the papers being discussed in your field. Currently indexing 66,879 bioRxiv papers from 294,441 authors.

The earliest ancient DNA data of modern humans from Europe dates to ~40 thousand years ago, but that from the Caucasus and the Near East to only ~14 thousand years ago, from populations who lived long after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) ~26.5-19 thousand years ago. To address this imbalance and to better understand the relationship of Europeans and Near Easterners, we report genome-wide data from two ~26 thousand year old individuals from Dzudzuana Cave in Georgia in the Caucasus from around the beginning of the LGM. Surprisingly, the Dzudzuana population was more closely related to early agriculturalists from western Anatolia ~8 thousand years ago than to the hunter-gatherers of the Caucasus from the same region of western Georgia of ~13-10 thousand years ago. Most of the Dzudzuana population's ancestry was deeply related to the post-glacial western European hunter-gatherers of the 'Villabruna cluster', but it also had ancestry from a lineage that had separated from the great majority of non-African populations before they separated from each other, proving that such 'Basal Eurasians' were present in West Eurasia twice as early as previously recorded. We document major population turnover in the Near East after the time of Dzudzuana, showing that the highly differentiated Holocene populations of the region were formed by 'Ancient North Eurasian' admixture into the Caucasus and Iran and North African admixture into the Natufians of the Levant. We finally show that the Dzudzuana population contributed the majority of the ancestry of post-Ice Age people in the Near East, North Africa, and even parts of Europe, thereby becoming the largest single contributor of ancestry of all present-day West Eurasians.

Download data

  • Downloaded 7,918 times
  • Download rankings, all-time:
    • Site-wide: 187 out of 66,889
    • In genetics: 20 out of 3,766
  • Year to date:
    • Site-wide: 97 out of 66,889
  • Since beginning of last month:
    • Site-wide: 312 out of 66,889

Altmetric data


Downloads over time

Distribution of downloads per paper, site-wide


Sign up for the Rxivist weekly newsletter! (Click here for more details.)


News