|Location of Hainan (red)|
The Li or Hlai are a Kradai-speaking people from Hainan, today a province of P.R. China and the only one which is fully insular (besides the claimed but not controlled Taiwan). However in the Pleistocene Hainan used to be a peninsula and therefore an affinity with mainland peoples was to be expected.
We found that Hainan islanders showed close relationship with the populations in mainland southern China, especially from Guangxi. Haplotype sharing analyses suggested that the recent gene flow from the mainland might play important roles in shaping the maternal pool of Hainan islanders. More importantly, haplogroups M12, M7e, and M7c1* might represent the genetic relics of the ancient population that populated this region; and 14 representative complete mtDNA genomes were further sequenced.
The predominant haplogroups in southern China and Southeast Asia: haplogroups B, F, and M7 together account for ~ 69%, 71%, and 63% of the maternal gene pools of the populations Li-BT, Li-LD, and Li-QZ, respectively (Table 1). The prevailing haplogroups in northern China, such as haplogroups A, D4, G, and Z, were rare or even absent in the three Li populations.
The genetic difference between Hainan islanders and populations from the mainland was statistically significant (p < 0.001, Analysis of molecular variance, AMOVA), whereas the difference between the Li populations (Li-BT, Li-LD, Li-QZ, Li-TZ, and Jiamao) and non-Li populations (Cun, Danga, and Lingao) was not (p = 0.147±0.010, AMOVA).
In general, the mtDNA haplogroup profiles of Hainan islanders are similar to the profiles of the populations from mainland southern China. (…) Especially, most Hainan islanders were clustered with some populations from Guangxi (Figure 3). This pattern was also reflected by the genome-wide data: the Jiamao population in Hainan Island was clustered with the Zhuang population (i.e. the dominant minority ethnic group in Guangxi) (…)
Update (Feb 17): the illustration errors have been fixed (sometimes writing an email is worth it) and now they can be used to better understand the genetics of the area. For example:
|From fig. 6: frequency of mtDNA M12|