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Ann Hum Biol. 1988 Sep-Oct;15(5):337-51.

Genetic variation within the Tupi linguistic group: new data on three Amazonian tribes.

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Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven.


A total of 505 individuals belonging to four populations of three Brazilian Indian tribes were variously studied in relation to 34 genetic systems, and the results were compared with South American Indian averages and five other Tupi populations. Rare variants (CdE of the Rh system, PGM211-1, Cp A-CAY1, serum cholinesterase2 C5+ and some Gm combinations) were observed with varying prevalences, and the three tribes showed different degrees of departure (28%-40% of differences of 10% or more in gene frequencies) from South American Indian averages. People from two communities who speak the same language and are labelled as belonging to the same tribe (Asurini) showed a large degree of genetic differentiation. Another of the tribes studied (Urubu-Kaapor) link through genetic distance analyses with two other tribes from the north of the continent, forming a distinct microevolutionary unit. These features emphasize the peculiarities of the genetic variation in populations with a hunter-gatherer, rudimentary agriculture type of economy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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