Mitochondrial DNA control region segment I sequences and melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) gene polymorphism were examined in ethnic populations in the silk road region of China. Both the frequencies of the MC1R variants and the results of mtDNA data in this region presented intermediate values between those of Europe and East and Southeast Asia, which suggested extensive gene admixture in this area and was in general agreement with previous studies. Phylogenetic analysis of the ethnic populations in the Silk Road region that based on mtDNA data didn't show expected cluster pattern according to their ethnogenesis. We suspect that a high migration rate in female among these closely related populations and other three demographic events might account for it.
2000 by The Genetics Society of Japan