Uncanny genetic proportions from Hungary suggest a long lasting Hunter-Gatherer ancestry in Central Europe at the Bronze Age, Gerber et al.
Uncanny genetic proportions from Hungary suggest a long lasting Hunter-Gatherer ancestry in Central Europe at the Bronze Age
Gerber Dániel (1, 2), Ari Eszter (2, 3), Szeifert Bea (1, 2), Kustár Ágnes, Fábián Szilvia (4), Bondár Mária (5), Kiss Viktória (5), Köhler Kitti (5), Mende Balázs Gusztáv (1), Szécsényi-Nagy Anna (1)
1 - Research Centre for the Humanities, Institute of Archaeogenomics, Eötvös Loránd Research Network (ELKH), Budapest, Hungary (Hungary), 2 - Department of Genetics, ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary (Hungary), 3 - Synthetic and Systems Biology Unit, Biological Research Centre, Eötvös Loránd Research Network (ELKH BRC) (Hungary), 4 - Natural History Museum (Hungary), 5 - Research Centre for the Humanities, Institute of Archaeology, Eötvös Loránd Research Network (ELKH), Budapest, Hungary (Hungary)
Bronze Age was a critical turning point in the formation of today's European populations when especially Central Europe became genetically really colourful. Recent large-scale studies tend to focus on the non-European connections and impacts of incoming populations, however, many factors that shaped the European genepool remains mostly uninvestigated. A number of neglected genetically outlier individuals left an anomalous proportion of Hunter-Gatherer (HG) heritage unrecognized in the post-Neolithic period. Rivollat et al. 2020 have already described elevated HG ancestry from Middle-Late Neolithic sites in present-day Germany, but without further uncovering its exact source and subsequent history. In our study communities of a single site, called Balatonkeresztúr in Western Hungary, from the Early-Middle Bronze age Kisapostag/Encrusted Pottery culture was genetically analysed for the first time, owing to their extensive cremation practices. The site provides further evidence of an increased, yet mosaically appearing HG component in Central Europe even at the Bronze Age, which likely originated in the region, as suggested by additional novel and published outlier samples. The hunt for the HG components' origin is presented in this talk, where yet barely used high coverage genomes were co-analysed and set to new directions by our dataset. We applied low coverage shotgun and genome-wide capture data of 20 individuals from the site, who belong to at least three distinct archaeological horizons. We were able to pinpoint rare genetic diseases, pigmentation, kinship, social organisation and population affinites of these people, thus providing the complex and multidisciplinary interpretation of these Bronze Age communities.