LDS Objections: Genetic Drift

  • Could genetic drift over 2,600 years account for the loss of Jewish haplotypes in Native Americans?

  • 700 year old remains show that Native American Genetic material found in mitochondria, the organelles that generate energy for the cell.mtDNA haplotypes have not changed significantly

  • The African Lemba tribe claims to have Jewish roots

  • More than 50% of Lemba One of the two sex chromosomes that determines maleness in mammals, carried and passed down from males to males.Y Chromosomes carry haplotypes that are common among Jewish populations but absent in their African neighbors

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Slide 42 of 56


Could genetic drift explain the lack of Jewish genetic markers in Native Americans? A study of Genetic material found in mitochondria, the organelles that generate energy for the cell.mtDNA from 108 individuals from 700 year old burial site confirmed the founding populations originated 23,000-37,000 years ago.1 The same kinds of haplotypes were found in the ancient remains as those seen today, indicating that not much genetic drift had occurred over the last 700 years.

The kinds of studies that have been done on Native Americans have also been done on some Africans, specifically the Lemba tribe from South Africa, who claimed to have Jewish roots. What is remarkable is that the time frame is almost exactly the same as that claimed by the Book of Mormon. Here is an excerpt from the prestigious journal Science:

Genetic evidence also supports the oral tradition that the Lemba, who are now Bantu-speaking people of southern Africa, derive from Jews who migrated from the Middle East to Yemen 2700 years ago and from Yemen to southern Africa 2400 to 2000 years ago. More than 50% of Lemba One of the two sex chromosomes that determines maleness in mammals, carried and passed down from males to males.Y Chromosomes carry haplotypes that are common among Jewish populations but absent in their African neighbors (17). Genetic analysis has also confirmed the distinctiveness of the Cohanim, or traditional Jewish priesthood.2

Although the Lemba physically look like their black neighbors, their genetics clearly indicate that they are one of the “lost” tribes of Israel. The idea that all the Jewish Functional and physical units of heredity passed from parent to offspring. Genes are pieces of DNA, and most genes contain the information for making a specific protein.genes could be lost through genetic drift in a population of Native Americans in only 2,700 years is absurd.


References Top of page

  1. C Stone and M Stoneking. 1998. Genetic material found in mitochondria, the organelles that generate energy for the cell.mtDNA Analysis of a Prehistoric Oneota Population: Implications for the Peopling of the New World. Am. J. Hum. Genet. 62:1153-1170.

  2. Owens, K. and M. King. 1999. Genomic views of human history. Science 286: 451-453.

http://godandscience.org/cults/sld042.html

 

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