Dissecting the paternal founders of Mundari (Austroasiatic) speakers associated with the language dispersal in South Asia

Singh, Prajjval Pratap; Vishwakarma, Shani; Sultana, Gazi Nurun Nahar; Pilvar, Arno; Karmin, Monika; Rootsi, Siiri; Villems, Richard; Metspalu, Mait; Behar, Doron M.; Kivisild, Toomas; van Driem, George; Chaubey, Gyaneshwer (2020). Dissecting the paternal founders of Mundari (Austroasiatic) speakers associated with the language dispersal in South Asia. European journal of human genetics, 29(3), pp. 528-532. Nature Publishing Group 10.1038/s41431-020-00745-1

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The phylogenetic analysis of Y chromosomal haplogroup O2a-M95 was crucial to determine the nested structure of South Asian branches within the larger tree, predominantly present in East and Southeast Asia. However, it had previously been unclear that how many founders brought the haplogroup O2a-M95 to South Asia. On the basis of the updated Y chromosomal tree for haplogroup O2a-M95, we analysed 1437 male samples from South Asia for various novel downstream markers, carefully selected from the extant phylogenetic tree. With this increased resolution of genetic markers, we were able to identify at least three founders downstream to haplogroup O2a-M95, who are likely to have been associated with the dispersal of Austroasiatic languages to South Asia. The fourth founder was exclusively present amongst Tibeto-Burman speakers of Manipur and Bangladesh. In sum, our new results suggest the arrival of Austroasiatic languages in South Asia during last 5000 years.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of Linguistics and Literary Studies > Institute of Linguistics

UniBE Contributor:

van Driem, George


400 Language > 410 Linguistics




Nature Publishing Group




Sonja Latscha

Date Deposited:

23 Feb 2021 14:21

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:47

Publisher DOI:






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