Mapping gene flow between ancient hominins through demography-aware inference of the ancestral recombination graph

Hubisz, Melissa, Williams, Amy, Siepel, Adam (June 2019) Mapping gene flow between ancient hominins through demography-aware inference of the ancestral recombination graph. BioRxiv. (Unpublished)

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DOI: 10.1101/687368


The sequencing of Neanderthal and Denisovan genomes has yielded many new insights about interbreeding events between extinct hominins and the ancestors of modern humans. While much attention has been paid to the relatively recent gene flow from Neanderthals and Denisovans into modern humans, other instances of introgression leave more subtle genomic evidence and have received less attention. Here, we present an extended version of the ARGweaver algorithm, ARGweaver-D, which can infer local genetic relationships under a user-defined demographic model that includes population splits and migration events. This Bayesian algorithm probabilistically samples ancestral recombination graphs (ARGs) that specify not only tree topology and branch lengths along the genome, but also indicate migrant lineages. The sampled ARGs can therefore be parsed to produce probabilities of introgression along the genome. We show that this method is well powered to detect the archaic migration into modern humans, even with only a few samples. We then show that the method can also detect introgressed regions stemming from older migration events, or from unsampled populations. We apply it to human, Neanderthal, and Denisovan genomes, looking for signatures of older proposed migration events, including ancient humans into Neanderthal, and unknown archaic hominins into Denisovans. We identify 3% of the Neanderthal genome that is putatively introgressed from ancient humans, and estimate that the gene flow occurred between 200-300kya. We find no convincing evidence that negative selection acted against these regions. We also identify 1% of the Denisovan genome which was likely introgressed from an unsequenced hominin ancestor, and note that 15% of these regions have been passed on to modern humans through subsequent gene flow.

Item Type: Paper
Subjects: bioinformatics > computational biology
bioinformatics > genomics and proteomics > genetics & nucleic acid processing > DNA, RNA structure, function, modification > genes, structure and function > gene expression
Investigative techniques and equipment > assays > whole genome sequencing
CSHL Authors:
Communities: CSHL labs > Siepel lab
SWORD Depositor: CSHL Elements
Depositing User: CSHL Elements
Date: 30 June 2019
Date Deposited: 24 May 2021 17:47
Last Modified: 24 May 2021 17:47

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