Chinese and Indian American population genetic structure

In Who We Are and How We Got Here: Ancient DNA and the New Science of the Human Past David Reich makes the observation that India is a nation of many different ethnicities, while China is dominated by a single ethnicity, the Han. This is obviously true, more or less. Even today the vast majority of Indians seem to be marrying with their own communities, jati.

Over the years I’ve collected many different genotypes of Americans of various origins who have purchased personal genomics kits, and given me their raw results. I decided to go through my collection and strip detailed ethnic labels and simply group together all those individuals from India, and China, who have had their genotypes done from one of the major services.

I suspect that these individuals are representative of “Indian Americans” and “Chinese Americans.” So what’s their genetic structure?

Here’s the variation of the consumers:

Merging with 1000 Genomes and some HGDP samples, here’s what I get:

Let’s zoom in on the Chinese:


In case you don’t know, the American Chinese community has been historically biased toward being mostly Cantonese. More recently, there have been migrants from Fujian. The Indian American distribution should be self-evident.

5 thoughts on “Chinese and Indian American population genetic structure

  1. So the middle Indian cluster are South Indian brahmins who have high levels of ANI and the top cluster is North Indian brahmins/?

  2. probably punjabis more in the north. there aren’t many ppl from the cow belt in the USA. some south indian brahmins, but they’ll be in the same position as a lot of gujus.

  3. OK, I understand.

    If you do’t mind me asking, why is there not more hypergamy in India given that caste seem to determine much of social status? If you are a wealthy Kshatriya and you have to pay a dowry for your girl why not arrange for her to marry a poor Brahmin? Sort of like wealthy Jews marrying their daughters off to poor Cohens. I don’t understand how the Brahmin population can be so small given the huge social privilege associated with being a Brahmin.

    Thank you

  4. no idea.

    though brahmins are like 2-5% of the population. that’s like 20 to 50 million people.

    also, brahmins are not necessarily that much higher in status that kshatriyas or vaishyas depending on the region. the latter groups acknowledge brahmin spiritual superiority, but they may be way richer and want to stay that way, and not dilute with poor brahmin lineages.

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