Total Pageviews

Monday, April 2, 2012

Kurdish Y-DNA at 23andme Part I

Today, I want to present Y chromosome results of Kurds that got analyzed by 23andme.

This is what we have so far:

1x E1b1b1c1a (Alevi)
1x G2a (Alevi)
2x J1 (Feyli, originally from Iran)
1x J1c3 (Sorani)
1x J2 (Kurd from Turkey)
1x T (Sorani)
1x R2a (Sorani)
1x R1b1a2* (Kurmanji from Zakho)
1x R1b1b2a (Zaza)
1x R1a1a (Sorani)
1x R1a1a (Z283+,  only his paternal great-grandfather is Kurdish from Turkey)
1x I2a2a (old I2b1) (Sorani)

Luckily, the last three in this list went a little bit further and got a more detailed analysis of their Y chromosome at FTDNA.

R1a1a (Sorani):
The Sorani with R1a1a turns out to be Z93+ L342.2+ L657-, a branch of R1a1a that is currently called R1a1a1h1a, but the nomenclature can change. He is H1483 and can be found in the 'R1a1a and Subclades Y chromosome project', a project that is designated 'to understand the haplogroup and explore the deeper structure of R1a1a'.
Individuals with Z93+ L342.2+ L657- are mostly from the Middle East, Central Asia, and South Asia. Additionally, Ashkenazi Jews with R1a1a are mostly positive for the two SNPs Z93 and L342.2 and negative for L657. In the 'R1a1a and Subclades Y chromosome project', this subclade is called 2C.

R1a1a (Z283+,  only his paternal great-grandfather is Kurdish from Turkey):
The second individual with paternal Kurdish ancestry and the Y chromosome haplogroup R1a1a is 214352 in the same project. He is definitely a very interesting case for Kurds as well as for the 'R1a1a and Subclades Y chromosome project' itself, since he belongs to a subclade (called subclade 3 in the project=R1a1a1g*) that was just recently discovered and that split from the most common European subclades in very ancient times. He is positive for Z283 and negative for all known underlying SNPs: Z283+ M417+ Z93- Z280- Pk5- P98- M64.2- M56- M458- M434- M334- M157.1- L260- L176.1- L175-.

To get a better idea of R1a1a and its subclades (lineage tree image from the project):

I2a2a-M223 (old name I2b1) (Sorani):
The third individual that provided more detailed information about his Y chromosome haplogroup is 229546. He can be found in the I2b1/M223 Y-CLAN STUDY, a project that is focusing on individuals that are positive for the SNP M223. In general, M223+ people were mostly found in Germany and Germanic speaking countries, however, there are a few cases described elsewhere.
The interesting part about the Kurdish Sorani 229546 is that he does not belong to one of the subclades of I2b1 (that emerged later in time) but he belongs to the roots of this haplogroup. His closest match so far is an Armenian individual (Distance 14/67; Shahnazar alias USC2T at ysearch).

R1b1a2* (R1b1b2 based on 23andme; Kurmanji from Zakho):
Although this individual did not get a more detailed analysis of his Y chromosome, we can say the following:
His haplogroup is old, older than the European subclades of R1b. His subclade is very rare and it is the root for the European R1b.

Note: The nomenclature is sometimes confusing, the most reliable source is ISOGG. 23andme tends to use the older nomenclature (in this case R1b1b2).

More data can be found here:
Kurdish Y-DNA Part II
Kurdish Y-DNA Part III
Kurdish Y-DNA Part IV
Kurdish Y-DNA Part V
Kurdish Y-DNA Part VI
Kurdish Y-DNA Part VII
Kurdish Y-DNA Part VIII


  1. The I2b1-M233 is intresting. Especially since it was found in Hazaras/Tajik samples in the new Afghanistan study.

    DMXX's comments on it are interesting.

    I wonder what we can make of it regarding its origins which is probably either farmer settlements from SE Europe, Indo-Iranain speakers, maybe an origin in West Asia or recent colonial ancestry.

  2. Thanks for the information. This is indeed interesting.

    "I wonder what we can make of it regarding its origins which is probably either farmer settlements from SE Europe, Indo-Iranain speakers, maybe an origin in West Asia or recent colonial ancestry."

    I think the last option (colonial ancestry) is the most unlikely scenario, the second option (Indo-Iranian speakers) sounds the most reasonable, however, the origin could be from ancient farmer settlements of SE Europe as well. We need more data to make such conclusions.

  3. I2b1 is also very common in Finno ugric speakers and Indo-Iranians had contact with them. I wonder how much fnno ugric, proto greek, proto slavic and greek admixture indo-iranians had.

    1. "I2b1 is also very common in Finno ugric speakers".

      Can you provide a link to a publication that provides data for your comment?

      In the FTDNA Finnland DNA Project, there are only 7 confirmed cases of I2b1 (7/1937 = 0.36%).

    2. That quote from DNA-forums isn't mine(thought my username and his made that clear). I was just posting other people's thoughts on I2b1. I trusted the poster of it to be giving accurate facts.

      I have heard an Armenian theory for I2b1 in Kurds. But considering Hazaras and Tajiks have it this seems very unlikely. What is the chance that Kurds,Tajiks and Hazaras would have the same I clade? Very low. It must represent something important that isn't recent admixture.

      Do you know about I in Central Asia (Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, South Kazakhstan)?

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.