Friday, May 5, 2017

Guess What?...LP Alelle Not Under Selective Pressure. Redux! (Segurel, Bon 2017)

Wanna guess what this August 31st paper will be about?

"Milkmaids in the Pasture" (Julien Dupree)
I'm guessing ancient genomes aren't cooperating with the current, poorly developed hypotheses on LP.  It doesn't sound like the Neolithic British developed these traits.

Of course, I could be wrong.  Perhaps the LP frequency is something like 30% in MBA or LBA Britain.  Hopefully Segurel and Bon will put beef on the table and stop all of this polite, academic nibbling around the issues.

The origin LP is a hugely interesting topic, but I don't think that story develops in Western Europe.  Beyond that, not a clue.

On the Evolution of Lactase Persistence in Humans.

Annu Rev Genomics Hum Genet. 2017 Apr 19. doi: 10.1146/annurev-genom-091416-035340. [Epub ahead of print]  Segurel and Bon

Lactase persistence-the ability of adults to digest the lactose in milk-varies widely in frequency across human populations. This trait represents an adaptation to the domestication of dairying animals and the subsequent consumption of their milk. Five variants are currently known to underlie this phenotype, which is monogenic in Eurasia but mostly polygenic in Africa. Despite being a textbook example of regulatory convergent evolution and gene-culture coevolution, the story of lactase persistence is far from clear: Why are lactase persistence frequencies low in Central Asian herders but high in some African hunter-gatherers?Whywas lactase persistence strongly selected for even though milk processing can reduce the amount of lactose? Are there other factors, outside of an advantage of caloric intake, that contributed to the selective pressure for lactase persistence? It is time to revisit what we know and still do not know about lactase persistence in humans. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Genomics and Human Genetics Volume 18 is August 31, 2017. Please see for revised estimates. 

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