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Finding a People's Origin

A recent paper in the American Journal of Human Biology looks into the origin of the Gagauzes people. They speak Turkish, live in southern Moldova and northeastern Bulgaria, and are thought to be descendants of either Turkic nomadic tribes or have a more complicated Anatolian-steppe origin. The researchers surveyed 89 Y-chromosomes samples from two Gagauz populations, compared them to those from Anatolian, Balkan, and Central Asian populations, and found the Gagauzes appear to be Balkan. However, the researchers say that the samples are not from a homogeneous group and that some microsatellite haplotypes are shared between Gagauz and Turkic populations. Razib blogs about this paper, adding a historical and anthropological perspective.


The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.