Contrasting sex bias in Neolithic and Bronze Age migrations to Europe

Published: 2017-02-23


A new study, looking at the sex-specifically inherited X chromosome of prehistoric human remains, shows that hardly any women took part in the extensive migration from the Pontic-Caspian Steppe approximately 5,000 years ago. The great migration that brought farming practices to Europe 4,000 years earlier, on the other hand, consisted of both women and men. The difference in sex bias suggests that different social and cultural processes drove the two migrations. The study was led by Mattias Jakobsson, Uppsala University/SciLifeLab and was published in PNAS.

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