Dogs likely originated in the Middle East, new genetic data indicate

I always find these studies fascinating. And wonder what conclusion would be reached if many minds were brought into an international project, including the minds of sociologists. It has been sometime ago, but I remember a theory about three ‘Eves’, including an Asian ‘Eve’, and African ‘Eve’ and a Middle Eastern ‘Eve’. If that theory holds up, it would make sense that the domesticated dog has its own ‘Eves’. Canines are nothing if not opportunistic!

Dogs likely originated in the Middle East, not Asia or Europe, according to a new genetic analysis by an international team of scientists led by UCLA biologists. The research, funded by the National Science Foundation and the Searle Scholars Program, appears March 17 in the advance online edition of the journal Nature.
“Dogs seem to share more genetic similarity with Middle Eastern gray wolves than with any other wolf population worldwide,” said Robert Wayne, UCLA professor of ecology and evolutionary biology and senior author of the Nature paper. “Genome-wide analysis now directly suggests a Middle East origin for modern dogs. We have found that a dominant proportion of modern dogs’ ancestry derives from Middle Eastern wolves, and this finding is consistent with the hypothesis that dogs originated in the Middle East. Read more…

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