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Insights into human genetic variation and population history from 929 diverse genomes

By Anders Bergström, Shane A. McCarthy, Ruoyun Hui, Mohamed A. Almarri, Qasim Ayub, Petr Danecek, Yuan Chen, Sabine Felkel, Pille Hallast, Jack Kamm, Hélène Blanché, Jean-François Deleuze, Howard Cann, Swapan Mallick, David Reich, Manjinder S Sandhu, Pontus Skoglund, Aylwyn Scally, Yali Xue, Richard Durbin, Chris Tyler-Smith

Posted 27 Jun 2019
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/674986 (published DOI: 10.1126/science.aay5012)

Genome sequences from diverse human groups are needed to understand the structure of genetic variation in our species and the history of, and relationships between, different populations. We present 929 high-coverage genome sequences from 54 diverse human populations, 26 of which are physically phased using linked-read sequencing. Analyses of these genomes reveal an excess of previously undocumented private genetic variation in southern and central Africa and in Oceania and the Americas, but an absence of fixed, private variants between major geographical regions. We also find deep and gradual population separations within Africa, contrasting population size histories between hunter-gatherer and agriculturalist groups in the last 10,000 years, a potentially major population growth episode after the peopling of the Americas, and a contrast between single Neanderthal but multiple Denisovan source populations contributing to present-day human populations. We also demonstrate benefits to the study of population relationships of genome sequences over ascertained array genotypes. These genome sequences are freely available as a resource with no access or analysis restrictions.

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