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Mapping Human Genetic Diversity on the Japanese Archipelago - Assignment Example

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The article explores the origin and diversification of East Asian populations, specifically the Japanese people. The origin of the current population on the island of Japan remains unclear to date…
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Mapping Human Genetic Diversity on the Japanese Archipelago
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Mapping Human Genetic Diversity on the Japanese Archipelago

Download file to see previous pages... Sara, and Li, Hu, which is titled “Mapping Human Genetic Diversity on the Japanese Archipelago” and published in Advances in anthropology 1.2 (2011): 19-25. The article explores the origin and diversification of East Asian populations, specifically the Japanese people. The origin of the current population on the island of Japan remains unclear to date (Ding et al. 1). According to archeological evidence, “there might have been two waves of migration to the Japanese archipelago in prehistory: the Paleolithic and Neolithic Jomonese and the Aeneolithic Yayoiese” (Ding et al. 1). However, Ding et al. affirm that the contributions of these two groups to the “contemporary Japanese population remain unclear” (1). Ding et al.’s work anticipates providing evidence from human genetics as a new approach to addressing this topic. Ding et al.’s research specifically examines the Japanese human population, a key contributor to East Asian populations. The migration of the Japanese population to their present island remains debatable, a feature that inspired Ding et al. to carry out this research. The investigation carried out by Ding et al. anticipates shading more light on the origin of the Japanese population. Japan forms a substantial proportion of the East Asian population. Controversy still rages as to how the Japan population arose. Two major waves of migration to the Japanese archipelago in prehistory have been proposed. Despite the fact that other theories exist, this research focused on the two major ones. “The first wave of migration began 50,000 years BP and reached a climax about 10,000 years BP, giving rise to the Jomonese culture” (qtd. in Hisao et al., 1998 ). Considered as the most recent, “a second wave of migration traveled to the Japanese archipelago at 23,000 years BP, giving rise to the Yayoi culture” (Ding et al. 1). According to fossil records and human remains, the Yayoiese apparently dominated the Japanese archipelago finalizing their expansion at about 300AD (qtd. in Chard, 1974). However, “the evidence from cranial morphology does not support a complete replacement of the Jomonese by the Yayoiese” (qtd. in Hanihara, 1984). Several theories explaining the origin and diversification of the Japanese exist (qtd. in Mizoguchi, 1986). The research done by Ding et al. used DNA and Y chromosome analyses to conclude the origin of contemporary Japanese from both maternal and paternal lineages. Molecular anthropological evidence seems more reliable when compared to historical, archeological or osteological studies, since the genetic material used in molecular anthropology tends to be continuous and maintains its integrity as its passed on from generation to generation (Ding et al.1). Historical, archeological or osteological studies are unreliable. When compared to other materials used in molecular anthropology studies, “Y chromosome and mtDNA prove to be the most powerful because of their abundance and ease of extraction” (qtd. in Zhang et al., 2007). By combining Y chromosome single nucleotide polymorphisms (Y-SNPs) and Y-chromosome short tandem repeats (Y-STRs) information, none recombining region of Y chromosome (NRY) can be used to reveal the population migration and expansion history of modern human (Ding et al. 20). Studies have also shown that mtDNA has a maternal inheritance protocol and the population genetic characteristics of mtDNA resemble the NRY (Ding et al. 20). The investigation carried out by Ding et al. seems to present new data which support an existing theory. The research also re-analyzes existing data. The key objective aimed at illustrating the origin of the East Asian populations and specifically the Japanese people, using ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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