Tracing back animal domestication in Iberia: clues from zooarchaeology and ancient DNA

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  • Tracing back animal domestication in Iberia: clues from zooarchaeology and ancient DNA

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Tracing back animal domestication in Iberia: clues from zooarchaeology and ancient DNA


S5-2, S6-3, General session, poster



The Iberian Peninsula is considered a biodiversity “hotspot” because it suffered the influence of several cultures and it was also a Glacial refugium. Native animal breeds were developed in Iberia and they are locally adapted to specific geographic and climate conditions. Extensive genetic data has been gathered for Portuguese native cattle and dogs showing that they harbor high genetic diversity and are genetically structured. No phylochronological study has been conducted to investigate past genetic diversity of Iberian breeds and the occurrence of local domestication.

We propose a phylochronological approach and a combination of archaeological and genetic data to investigate: a) The origins of Iberian cattle and dogs; b) The occurrence of local domestication of wild ox and wolves; c) Possible hybridization between cattle and dog domesticates with their respective wild counterparts.

Ancient DNA analysis of animal remains from the Iberia: wild, early domesticates and modern samples, spanning over 15,000 years before present back to the Mesolithic or Superior Paleolithic. Employ a multi-marker methodology to describe mitochondrial, Y-chromosomal and autosomal SNP variation.

Although remains are buried under sub-optimal conditions, ancient DNA retrieval was successful and authentic sequences were generated for a few samples. We will be able to implement a fine-scale genetic analysis of Iberian cattle and dog samples throughout time.


GINJA Catarina1, AMORIM Isabel Rosário3, CARDOSO João Luis4, DETRY Cleia5, DAVIS Simon5, MATOS José6, SIMÕES Fernanda6, SA-PEREIRA Paula6, MENDONÇA Diogo6, PETRUCCI-FONSECA Francisco7, GAMA Luis2, PENEDO Cecília1, CHIKHI Lounés8,9, GOTHERSTROM Anders10, SVENSSON Emma10, GAUTIER Mathieu11, HANNI Catherine12, PIRES Ana Elisabete6,7


1 Veterinary Genetics Laboratory, University of California, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616,;
2 Instituto Nacional dos Recursos Biológicos, Fonte Boa, 2005-048 Vale de Santarém, Portugal,
3 Departamento de Ciências Agrárias – CITAA, Universidade dos Açores, Terra Chã, 9700-851 Angra do Heroísmo, Terceira, Açores, Portugal,
4 Universidade Aberta Palácio Ceia - Rua da Escola Politécnica - 141-147 1269-001 Lisboa, Portugal,
5 Instituto de Gestão do Património Arquitectónico e Arqueológico, IP, Palácio Nacional da Ajuda 1349-021 Lisboa, Portugal,;
6 Instituto Nacional dos Recursos Biológicos - Grupo de Biologia Molecular, 1649-038 Lisboa, Portugal,;;;;
7 Centro de Biologia Ambiental, Faculdade de Ciências, Dep. Biologia Animal, Universidade de Lisboa, 1749-016 Lisboa, Portugal,
8 Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Rua da Quinta Grande, no. 6, 2780-156 Oeiras, Portugal,
9 CNRS UMR EDB, Toulouse,
10 Department of Evolutionary Biology, Uppsala University, Norbyvagten 18D, 74236 Uppsala, Sweden,;
11 INRA, UMR de Génétique Animale et Biologie Intégrative, 78350 Jouy-en-Josas, France,
12 Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Paléogénétique et Evolution Moléculaire, 46 Allée d’Italie 69364 Lyon, France,


Ginja, Catarina
Amorim, Isabel Rosário
Cardoso, João Luis
Detry, Cleia
Davis, Simon
Matos, José
Simões, Fernanda
Sa-Pereira, Paula
Mendonça, Diogo
Petrucci-Fonseca, Francisco
Gama, Luis
Penedo, Cecília
Chikhi, Lounés
Gotherstrom, Anders10
Svensson, Emma10
Gautier, Mathieu
Hanni, Catherine1
Pires, Ana Elisabete


August 2010

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Ginja, Catarina, Amorim, Isabel Rosário, Cardoso, João Luis, Detry, Cleia, Davis, Simon, Matos, José, Simões, Fernanda, Sa-Pereira, Paula, Mendonça, Diogo, Petrucci-Fonseca, Francisco, Gama, Luis, Penedo, Cecília, Chikhi, Lounés, Gotherstrom, Anders10, Svensson, Emma10, Gautier, Mathieu, Hanni, Catherine1 and Pires, Ana Elisabete. "Tracing back animal domestication in Iberia: clues from zooarchaeology and ancient DNA ," in BoneCommons, Item #1168, (accessed August 7, 2020).


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