I'm trying to understand this genetic map World map of Y-DNA Haplogroups and reading this article Settlement of the Americas. The article says North America and South America were settled by people from North Asia by way of the Beringia land bridge and/or from Northeast Asia via travel water.

So did these people from North / northeast Asia who migrated to Latin America, have any ancestors in common with the Chinese, or has there been migration from North Asia to China which would mean the modern Chinese have some ancestors in common with current Latin Americans?

I'm talking about "recent" ancestors meaning less than 50,000 years, not far ancestors from 250,000 to 2.24 millions years like the ones who originally inhabited China

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    Ive seen a few challenges on this theory of recent stating it was possible to cross a frozen Atlantic as an alternative to the berengia model. Im curious if there are any genetic markers that would support that too
    – Twelfth
    Jan 18, 2018 at 22:23
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    I think you're underestimating how long 50,000 years is. All Europeans are descended from Charlemagne... and that's only a millennium. Humans reached the Americas from Beringia no more than 20,000 years ago, and swiftly expanded into South America. And Beringia was settled from neighbouring Siberia, no more than 36,000 years ago. Some of the those Eastern Siberians would've originally came from China. And later on, the Altaic peoples also left their imprints in Chinese genes from their invasions.
    – Semaphore
    Jan 18, 2018 at 23:01
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    @Twelfth The evidence for that is pretty thin - as the article pointed out, "Two separate studies of mitochondrial DNA . . .provide no evidence for a second origin point for the American population, instead strongly suggesting that the ancestors of indigenous Americans only entered the New World from Asia."
    – Semaphore
    Jan 18, 2018 at 23:04
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    Unfortunately the attempts to map Chinese origins have flaws (sample size, too many relatives in one sample, etc..) so its challenging to come up with any conclusive data here. Most Chinese history only goes back to around 2850bc (Huaxia) as their origins, long after the move over the Beringia Bridge. There is the distinct possibility that there is a common ancestor that crossed the Beringia land bridge also settled the Guanzhong river, but nothing I can prove...I mean if we are going with the out of africa theories, we all have common ancestors, no?...finding a 'recent' one is challenging.
    – Twelfth
    Jan 19, 2018 at 0:00
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    @Pablo I wish that were true for disease! Jan 19, 2018 at 3:19

2 Answers 2


The basic answer is no. There is no better connection between the people of the Americas and the Chinese people than there is for any other groups of humans on the planet.

Probably the best way to view the peopling of the Americas is that there was constant interaction throughout human history through Beringia. Land bridge not required. Human beings know how to make boats, and it now seems even likely coast-hopped around the glaciers back when they were a thing. So the source peoples for the Americas were basically all the groups of people who were living in far northeast Siberia through human history.

The Chinese people linguistically belong to the Sino-Tibetan language family. Their ancestors were probably all living on the tibetan pleatau more than 6000 years ago. When domesticated rice and millet made their ways up the Yangtze and Yellow rivers respectively, the Sino-Tibetians who took to it fully were thereafter able to use their sheer numbers to push any non-farmers out of the various river valleys of China. Other groups of Sino-Tibetians pushed south into good river valleys that were usable for their rice. However, neither crop grows well in Sibera, so they have not until recent times ever colonized areas much further north than Manchuira. The land past there was just of no use to their rice/millet culture.

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One thing you may notice about the Tibetan Plateau is that it is way, way, far away from Beringia. So even any connection further back that linguistics can look is going to be fairly remote.

Looking further back with genetics seems promising, but remember we're still fairly new with it, so you have to be careful. Among many other issues, it can amplify trivial and tenuous chains of contacts for no relevant reason*

It seems every human on the planet has a least one common male and female ancestor roughly 200,000 years ago (give or take rather a lot), and Homo Sapiens Sapiens first left Africa about 50,000 years ago. So if 50,000 years ago counts as recent for you, good news! Nearly everyone outside of sub-Saharan Africa is recently related to Chinese!

People first moved into the Americas about 10 - 20,000 years ago. Again, Genetics is really rough right now, and implies nothing really about cultural movement, but even with that caveat, very few of the prevalent halplotypes in Native Americans can be found among the Chinese. What strong connections exist appear to mostly be with various north Asian peoples such as the Mongols, Yensieans, and assorted other Siberian peoples (as one would of course expect).

I personally wouldn't consider any connection far prior to the retreats of the ice sheets associated with the current interglacial (about 10,000 years ago) to be "recent". It really was a completely different world for our species before then. It seems unlikely there was any significant convergence of Chinese and Native American ancestry since that time.

* - For example, the sickle-cell trait is somewhat protective against malaria. Its spread out of sub-Saharan Africa to some areas in the Middle-East and Europe implies a lot more about the prevalence of Malaria there than it does about the prevalence of Africans.


Mitogenome evidence shows two radiation events and dispersal of matrilineal ancestry from northern coastal

The Native American lineage D4h3a can trace its ancestry to northern coastal China • Radiations of D4h contribute to gene pools of Native Americans and Japanese • Coastal radiations of D4h support the coastal route of early Native Americans

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    Can you provide the source for this, and a clearer time frame? Nov 4, 2023 at 5:39

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