Horny bulls

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Cattle domestication in the Near East was followed by hybridization with aurochs bulls in Europe:

Domesticated cattle were one of the cornerstones of European Neolithisation and are thought to have been introduced to Europe from areas of aurochs domestication in the Near East. This is consistent with mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) data, where a clear separation exists between modern European cattle and ancient specimens of British aurochsen. However, we show that Y chromosome haplotypes of north European cattle breeds are more similar to haplotypes from ancient specimens of European aurochsen, than to contemporary cattle breeds from southern Europe and the Near East….

Related: Humans greedy for pig? (which shows that pig mtDNA tends to exhibit diverse lineage signatures)

2 Comments

  1. I wonder if the clear seperation of ancient British aurochsen and modern European mtDNA, is just the end product of one or many selective sweeps, where the Near Eastern mtDNA offered some selective advantage over that of the aurochsen?? 
     
    Similar maybe to the Neandertal vs Modern mtDNA issue?

  2. Sounds like “total bull” to me…hyuk, hyuk, hyuk… 
     
    Keep up the good work!

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