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The genome-wide structure of the Jewish people,
by Doron M. Behar, Bayazit Yunusbayev,, Mait Metspalu, Ene Metspalu,
Saharon Rosset, Ju¨ri Parik,
Siiri Rootsi, Gyaneshwer Chaubey, Ildus Kutuev,, Guennady
Yudkovsky,, Elza K. Khusnutdinova,
Oleg Balanovsky, Ornella Semino, Luisa Pereira,, David Comas, David
Gurwitz, Batsheva Bonne-Tamir,
Tudor Parfitt, Michael F. Hammer, Karl Skorecki, & Richard Villems
Nature (2010) DOI: doi:10.1038/nature09103

Researchers from eight countries examined 600,000 genetic traits;
receiving an integrated picture of the genetic structure of the Jewish
People by comparing the descendents of 14 Diaspora Jewish
communities with 69 non-Jewish populations around the world; most of
the Jewish communities showed genetic links to a Levantine component
An international team of scientific researchers from eight countries has
clarified the genetic structure of the Jewish People over the entire
genome level. The prestigious scientific journal “Nature” reports that
researchers from eight countries examined 600,000 genetic traits and
received an integrated picture of the genetic structure of the Jewish
People by comparing the descendents of Diaspora Jewish communities
with 69 non-Jewish populations around the world.
The primary author of the article is Dr. Doron Behar of the Rambam
Medical Center in Haifa, who works with Prof. Richard Villems from the
Estonian Biological Center in Tartu. The other Israeli researchers are
Prof. Karl Skorecki and Gennady Yudkowsky from the Technion’s
Rappaport Faculty of Medicine and Rappaport Family Institute for
Research in Medical Sciences and the Rambam Medical Center; and Dr.
Saharon Rosset, Dr. David Gurwitz and Prof. Batsheva Bonee-Tamir
from Tel-Aviv University.
“Contemporary Jewry is made up of a collection of communities whose
members around the world identify with one another by virtue of
common religious tradition, history and culture,” explains Dr. Behar.
“Historical evidence suggests a common origin in the Middle East,
followed by multiple migrations that led to the creation of Jewish
communities in Europe, Africa and Asia – what we call the Jewish
Diaspora. Previous genetic research showed a common patriarchal
dynasty with multiple establishing events for a matriarchal dynasty – but
did not examine the origin of Jews on the overall genome level and
across the wide spectrum of the Jewish Diaspora.”
The international team of scientists, which included researchers from
Israel, Estonia, Russia, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Great Britain and the
USA, completed a comprehensive analysis of more than 600,000 genetic
traits dispersed over the entire genome in order to receive an integrated
picture of the genetic structure of the Jewish People. They did so by
comparing the descendents of 14 Diaspora Jewish communities with 69
non-Jewish populations around the world. Analysis of the results
demonstrated a genetic structure in Middle Eastern populations that was
not previously described and emphasized a Levantine component which
shows a strong genetic link to most of the Jewish communities and more
than 90% of contemporary Jewry. The genetic group of Jewish
communities and its overlapping with certain Levantine populations is
greater than the overlapping with host populations in the Diaspora in an
overwhelming number of cases. These findings are consistent with
common origins in the Levant, later migration that led to the creation of
the Jewish Diaspora and different levels of mixing with non-Jewish
populations among different communities in the Jewish dispersion.
Therefore, the genetic evidence on a broad genome level is consistent
with accepted historical testimony concerning the origin and population
structure of the Jewish people.                                                           
Arnold Zweig The Face of East European Jewry
with drawings by Hermann Struck
7/11/2011 Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz completes the translation of Talmud into
Hebrew , after 45 years of work