Document Detail

Italian populations during the Copper Age: assessment of biological affinities through morphological dental traits.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20067371     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The Copper Age (3rd millennium BC) was characterized by considerable socioeconomic transformations and coincided with the discovery of metallurgy. In this study we reconstruct the peopling of Italy during this period on the basis of dental morphology traits. Dental remains from 41 sites throughout Italy were analyzed; only three of the sites (Laterza and two from Sicily) span from the late Copper Age to the early Bronze Age. To work with adequate samples, we pooled the collections into nine geographically and culturally homogeneous groups. Dental morphological traits were scored on 8,891 teeth from 1,302 individuals using the ASUDAS scale. The correlation between the mean measure of divergence and geographic distances (calculated as air distances) was computed. Multidimensional scaling with the minimum spanning tree and maximum-likelihood methods was applied to assess the relationships between groups. The results revealed a substantial genetic homogeneity among the populations throughout the Italian peninsula during the Copper Age with the exception of Sardinia, which tends to diverge from the continental samples. Phenetic and geographic distances correlate highly significantly only when the southern samples from Sicily and Laterza are removed from the analysis, which indicates that these groups may have experienced genetic admixture with external populations.
Rita Vargiu; Andrea Cucina; Alfredo Coppa
Publication Detail:
Type:  Historical Article; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Human biology     Volume:  81     ISSN:  1534-6617     ISO Abbreviation:  Hum. Biol.     Publication Date:  2009 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-01-13     Completed Date:  2010-04-15     Revised Date:  2011-04-18    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0116717     Medline TA:  Hum Biol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  479-93     Citation Subset:  IM    
Dipartimento di Biologia Animale e dell'Uomo, Universitá di Roma Sapienza, Ple. A. Moro 5, 00185 Rome, Italy.
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MeSH Terms
Genetics, Population*
History, Ancient
Tooth / anatomy & histology*

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