Research: Serbs have 50 percent Slavic origin, and the rest is the genetics of the Old Balkan population

Belgrade photo MIA

Today's Serbs have about 50-60 percent Slavic origin, and the rest is the genetics of the old Balkan population mixed with settlers from Anatolia, from urban centers such as Constantinople and Ephesus, the results of research on the origin of the Serbs and other Balkan peoples showed, the MIA correspondent from Belgrade.

Those results under the title "The genomic history of the Balkans from the Roman border to the Slavic migrations" were published in the prestigious world magazine "Cell".

Using the latest genomic technologies and researching the ancient DNA of the Balkans, a team of researchers from Serbia, Spain and the United States have shown the continuity of the genes of today's Serbian and ancient Balkan populations since the Bronze Age.

The research was initiated by researchers from the Faculty of Biology in Belgrade, professors Miodrag Grbić, Željko Tomanović, corresponding member of SANU and professor Dušan Keckarević, as well as researchers from the Archaeological Institute Ilija Mikić, Miomir Korac and Snezhana Golubović, in collaboration with the University of Barcelona and Harvard.

By analyzing the ancient DNA of more than 30 localities, the research shows a cross-section of genetic changes and population migrations in the Balkans, across more than two millennia.

The DNA sequence of more than 140 skeletons from the period from the 1st to the 10th century from Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Albania and Greece was determined.

The genomes of the modern population were also sequenced for the first time.

According to Professor Miodrag Grbic, it has been confirmed that in the 6th and 7th centuries there were massive Slavic migrations that left a deep genetic mark on all the peoples of the Balkans.

And Croats, Romanians and Bulgarians have about 50-60 percent of Slavic genetics. Heading towards Greece, that percentage drops to just four to 20 percent on the Greek islands.

- The different languages, religion and culture indicate demographic and cultural processes during the millennia of history, even though they are genetically very close - said Professor Dusan Keckarevic

He adds that today's genome analysis shows the greatest genetic closeness of Serbs, Croats and Romanians.

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