Population interconnectivity over the past 120,000 years explains distribution and diversity of Central African hunter-gatherers.
Arango Isaza, Epifanía
Migliano, Andrea Bamberg
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
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Padilla-Iglesias, C., Atmore, L. M., Olivero, J., Lupo, K., Manica, A., Arango Isaza, E., Vinicius, L., & et al. (2022). Population interconnectivity over the past 120,000 years explains distribution and diversity of Central African hunter-gatherers.. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 119 (21) https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2113936119
The evolutionary history of African hunter-gatherers holds key insights into modern human diversity. Here, we combine ethnographic and genetic data on Central African hunter-gatherers (CAHG) to show that their current distribution and density are explained by ecology rather than by a displacement to marginal habitats due to recent farming expansions, as commonly assumed. We also estimate the range of hunter-gatherer presence across Central Africa over the past 120,000 years using paleoclimatic reconstructions, which were statistically validated by our newly compiled dataset of dated archaeological sites. Finally, we show that genomic estimates of divergence times between CAHG groups match our ecological estimates of periods favoring population splits, and that recoveries of connectivity would have facilitated subsequent gene flow. Our results reveal that CAHG stem from a deep history of partially connected populations. This form of sociality allowed the coexistence of relatively large effective population sizes and local differentiation, with important implications for the evolution of genetic and cultural diversity in Homo sapiens.
Population dynamics, Hunter-gatherers, environmental change, Central Africa, Ecological Niche Modelling, Humans, Population Density, Anthropology, Cultural, Archaeology, Cultural Diversity, Agriculture, Africa, Genetic Variation
European Commission Horizon 2020 (H2020) Marie Sk?odowska-Curie actions (813383)
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2113936119
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/338231
Attribution 4.0 International
Licence URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/