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DNA Rewrites the Ancient Japanese History

Old DNA extracted from human bones has revised early Japanese history by emphasizing that modern-day populations in Japan have a tripartite genetic origin. The finding refines accepted views of a dual genomic ancestry.

The new sequenced Japanese genomes report that the modern-day populations show the genetic signatures of early indigenous Jomon hunter-gatherer-fishers and immigrant Yayoi farmers. There is also another genetic component that is linked to the Kofun peoples, whose culture spread in Japan between the 3rd and 7th centuries.

The archipelago of Japan was occupied by humans for 38,000 years. Later Japan underwent rapid transformations only in the last 3,000 years, first from foraging to wet-rice farming, and then to a technologically advanced imperial state.The long-standing assessment showed that mainland Japanese populations have dual-ancestry from the indigenous Jomon hunter-gatherer-fishers, who inhabited the Japanese archipelago from around 16,000 to 3,000 years ago, and later Yayoi farmers, who migrated from the Asian continent and lived in Japan from around 900 BC to 300 AD.

The 12 newly sequenced ancient Japanese genomes which are extracted from the bones of people living in pre-and post-farming periods identify a later influx of East Asian ancestry during the imperial Kofun period, which lasted from around 300 to 700 AD and which saw the emergence of political centralisation in Japan.Niall Cooke, PhD. Researchers at Trinity said that the indigenous Jomon people had their unique lifestyle and culture within Japan for thousands of years before the adoption of rice farming during the subsequent Yayoi period.

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