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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Genomic microsatellites identify shared Jewish ancestry intermediate between Middle Eastern and European populations

Naama M Kopelman*, Lewi Stone, Chaolong Wang, Dov Gefel, Marcus W Feldman, Jossi Hillel and Noah A Rosenberg*

BMC Genetics 2009, 10:80  doi:10.1186/1471-2156-10-80

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Fails to adress the likely Anatolian origin

Luis Aldamiz   (2009-12-16 11:29)  none

I must say that I'm again disappointed at the approach of the paper. Arabs and Europeans are used as controls but a large void is left (again) in the area around modern Turkey, where the ancient Jewish Diaspora lived for many centuries (in a time when proselytism was common in Judaism too).

I find this most striking but also systematic failure of Jewish genetic studies in general. Only studies no focused in Jewish ancestry, like Bauchet 2007, have provided some clarification on this aspect, clustering Jews with Greeks and Armenians. But they await to be confirmed.

The first thing I looked for in this paper was whether Turks (or maybe Balcanic peoples) had been sampled as controls. Sadly it was not the case.

Otherwise the paper does provide some interesting information like the clustering of diverse Jewish groups and their lack of clustering with any of the other groups, notably Palestinians and Druzes, in their main component. But I really believe that using better chosen control populations, Turks among them, would give much more clear and interesting results.

Competing interests

None in particular.

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