Dispersals and genetic adaptation of Bantu-speaking populations in Africa and North America

Etienne Patin, Marie Lopez, Rebecca Grollemund, Paul Verdu, Christine Harmant, Hélène Quach, Guillaume Laval, George H. Perry, Luis B. Barreiro, Alain Froment, Evelyne Heyer, Achille Massougbodji, Cesar Fortes-Lima, Florence Migot-Nabias, Gil Bellis, Jean Michel Dugoujon, Joana B. Pereira, Verónica Fernandes, Luisa Pereira, Lolke Van Der VeenPatrick Mouguiama-Daouda, Carlos D. Bustamante, Jean Marie Hombert, Lluís Quintana-Murci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

58 Scopus citations

Abstract

Bantu languages are spoken by about 310 million Africans, yet the genetic history of Bantu-speaking populations remains largely unexplored. We generated genomic data for 1318 individuals from 35 populations in western central Africa, where Bantu languages originated. We found that early Bantu speakers first moved southward, through the equatorial rainforest, before spreading toward eastern and southern Africa. We also found that genetic adaptation of Bantu speakers was facilitated by admixture with local populations, particularly for the HLA and LCT loci. Finally, we identified a major contribution of western central African Bantu speakers to the ancestry of African Americans, whose genomes present no strong signals of natural selection. Together, these results highlight the contribution of Bantu-speaking peoples to the complex genetic history of Africans and African Americans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)543-546
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume356
Issue number6337
DOIs
StatePublished - May 5 2017

    Fingerprint

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General

Cite this

Patin, E., Lopez, M., Grollemund, R., Verdu, P., Harmant, C., Quach, H., Laval, G., Perry, G. H., Barreiro, L. B., Froment, A., Heyer, E., Massougbodji, A., Fortes-Lima, C., Migot-Nabias, F., Bellis, G., Dugoujon, J. M., Pereira, J. B., Fernandes, V., Pereira, L., ... Quintana-Murci, L. (2017). Dispersals and genetic adaptation of Bantu-speaking populations in Africa and North America. Science, 356(6337), 543-546. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aal1988