Broad maternal geographic origin of domestic sheep in Anatolia and the Zagros

Her, Charlotte
Rezaei, Hamid-Reza
Hughes, Sandrine
Naderi, Saeid
Duffraisse, Marilyne
Mashkour, Marjan
Naghash, Hamid-Reza
Balasescu, Adrian
Luikart, Gordon
Jordan, Steve
Ozut, Deniz
Bruford, Michael W.
Tresset, Anne
Vigne, Jean-Denis
Taberlet, Pierre
Hanni, Catherine
Pompanon, Francois
We investigated the controversial origin of domestic sheep (Ovis aries) using large samples of contemporary and ancient domestic individuals and their closest wild relatives: the Asiatic mouflon (Ovis gmelini), the urial (Ovis vignei) and the argali (Ovis ammon). A phylogeny based on mitochondrial DNA, including 213 new cytochrome-b sequences of wild Ovism confirmed that O. gmelini is the maternal ancestor of sheep and precluded mtDNA contributions from O. vignei (and O. gmelini x O. vignei hybrids) to domestic lineages. We also produced 54 new control region sequences showing shared haplogroups (A, B, C and E) between domestic sheep and wild O. gmelini which localized the domestication center in eastern Anatolia and central Zagros, excluding regions further east where exclusively wild haplogroups were found. This overlaps with the geographic distribution of O. gmelini gmelini, further suggesting that the maternal origin of domestic sheep derives from this subspecies. Additionally, we produced 57 new CR sequences of Neolithic sheep remains from a large area covering Anatolia to Europe, showing the early presence of at least three mitochondrial haplogroups (A, B and D) in Western colonization routes. This confirmed that sheep domestication was a large-scale process that captured diverse maternal lineages (haplogroups).


Strong population structure in a species manipulated by humans since the Neolithic: the European fallow deer (Dama dama dama)
Baker, K. H.; Gray, H. W. I.; Ramovs, V.; Mertzanidou, D.; AKIN PEKŞEN, Çiğdem; Bilgin, Cemal Can; Sykes, N.; Hoelzel, A. R. (2017-07-01)
Species that have been translocated and otherwise manipulated by humans may show patterns of population structure that reflect those interactions. At the same time, natural processes shape populations, including behavioural characteristics like dispersal potential and breeding system. In Europe, a key factor is the geography and history of climate change through the Pleistocene. During glacial maxima throughout that period, species in Europe with temperate distributions were forced south, becoming distribut...
MTDNA based genetic diversity of native sheep breeds and Anatolian mouflon (Ovis Gmelini Anatolica)
Demirci, Sevgin; Togan, İnci Zehra; Department of Bioinformatics (2012)
In the present study, history of domestic sheep were investigated by mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) based haplogroups (HPG) of 628 samples and mtDNA control region (CR) sequences of 240 samples from 13 Turkish sheep breeds which were located in the hearth of the first domestication center. Also, 30 Anatolian wild sheep (Ovis gmelinii anatolica) mtDNA CR sequences were obtained to contribute to the scenarios on initial domestication stages of sheep. Haplogroup compositions of breeds were identified with SSCP meth...
Exploring the evolutionary history of Anatolian neolithic sheep using modern and ancient genomics
Yurtman, Erinç; Somel, Mehmet; Department of Biology (2019)
The transition from hunting-gathering to sedentism happened in West Asia in the early Holocene, eventually giving way to the establishment of agriculture and livestock breeding. In this process, domestication of wild animals played crucial role for human settlements. The domestication center of sheep, among the main four livestock species, is thought to have been within Anatolia. Previous archaeozoological studies also suggested that after domestication this species migrated with human populations to other ...
Understanding domestication process of sheep across Central and Western Anatolia by using ancient DNA
Özer, Onur; Somel, Mehmet; Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics (2017)
Several archaeological and genetic studies indicated that Southeastern Anatolia was the only center of domestication for sheep. The study presented here aims to understand how and when domestic sheep were transported across Anatolia into west from the domestication center by using ancient DNA. In order to achieve that, ancient DNA was extracted from 234 sheep bone samples dating between Epipaleolithic and 2800 BCE from 9 archaeological excavations (Tepecik-Çiftlik, Yeşilova, Ulucak, Aktopraklık, Barcın, Çat...
Genetic diversity of sheep breeds focusing on conservation research in turkey
Açan, Sinan Can; Togan, İnci Zehra; Öktem, Hüseyin Avni; Department of Biology (2012)
In the first part of the present study, samples of 13 native Turkish sheep breeds (n=628) were examined, individually and comparatively, with respect to their 19 microsatellite loci to characterize them by employing various statistical analyses. Low FST values, high mean number of alleles and allelic richness as well as results of Factorial Correspondence Analysis and Structure analyses showed the degree of admixture between native sheep breeds of Turkey, IVE and SAK were observed as the most distincts of t...
Citation Formats
C. Her et al., “Broad maternal geographic origin of domestic sheep in Anatolia and the Zagros,” ANIMAL GENETICS, pp. 0–0, 2022, Accessed: 00, 2022. [Online]. Available: