Bollongino, R., Edwards, Ceiridwen J., Alt, K.W., Burger, J.D. and Bradley, D. G. (2006) Early history of European domestic cattle as revealed by ancient DNA. Biology Letters, 2 (1). pp. 155-159. ISSN 1744-9561

We present an extensive ancient DNA analysis of mainly Neolithic cattle bones sampled from archaeological sites along the route of Neolithic expansion, from Turkey to North-Central Europe and Britain. We place this first reasonable population sample of Neolithic cattle mitochondrial DNA sequence diversity in context to illustrate the continuity of haplotype variation patterns from the first European domestic cattle to the present. Interestingly, the dominant Central European pattern, a starburst phylogeny around the modal sequence, T3, has a Neolithic origin, and the reduced diversity within this cluster in the ancient samples accords with their shorter history of post-domestic accumulation of mutation.

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