DNA proof shakes Mormon world

DNA proof has shaken the Mormon world. Mormons have converted millions of Native Americans to the religion by saying that they were descendants of the lost tribe of Jews that sailed for the New World in 600 BC.

The God-fearing Nephites were “pure” (the word was officially changed from “white” in 1981) and “delightsome.” The idol-worshiping Lamanites received the “curse of blackness,” turning their skin dark.
According to the Book of Mormon, by 385 AD the dark-skinned Lamanites had wiped out other Hebrews. The Mormon church called the victors “the principal ancestors of the American Indians.” If the Lamanites returned to the church, their skin could once again become white.

Current DNA proof show that Native Americans descended not from the Middle East, but from Asia.
Via LATimes

  • Michael

    Humans slowly adjust to their environment over time. It would make sense for the DNA to be a little different. Your DNA tests do not prove anything.
    this url is a proof page for the Book of Mormon by a very smart Latter Day Saint.
    http://www.jefflindsay.com/LDSFAQ/

  • Michael

    Humans slowly adjust to their environment over time. It would make sense for the DNA to be a little different. Your DNA tests do not prove anything.
    this url is a proof page for the Book of Mormon by a very smart Latter Day Saint.
    http://www.jefflindsay.com/LDSFAQ/

  • Based on the proof, then what you’re saying is that somehow or another the DNA shifted from originating in the Asia to originating in the Middle East?
    From the way origination of genes are mapped and tracked, that’s an impossibility.
    In any case, Jeff Lindsay doesn’t have anything to say against genetic proof that Native Americans didn’t result from the lost tribe of Jerusalem.
    And these aren’t “my tests” whatever that’s supposed to infer.

  • darkmoon

    Based on the proof, then what you’re saying is that somehow or another the DNA shifted from originating in the Asia to originating in the Middle East?
    From the way origination of genes are mapped and tracked, that’s an impossibility.
    In any case, Jeff Lindsay doesn’t have anything to say against genetic proof that Native Americans didn’t result from the lost tribe of Jerusalem.
    And these aren’t “my tests” whatever that’s supposed to infer.

  • Doug Forbes

    A report in the L A Times by William Lobdell (February 6, 2006) asserted that some Mormons were troubled by a “lack of discernible Hebrew blood in Native Americans”. In fact about one third of Native American males selected for DNA research belong to Y chromosome lineage groups commonly found in modern Jews. This includes the Q-P36 lineage group that is ancestral to the primary Native American lineage group Q3. Q-P36 is found in 5% of Ashkenazi Jews [1], 5% of Iraqi Jews [2] and a significant number of Iranian Jews [3]. Other west Eurasian lineages found in Native American test subjects include R, E3b, J, F, G, and I [4]. All of these are also found in modern Jews. The trouble isn’t a “lack of discernible Hebrew blood in Native Americans”, but a lack of discernible facts in Lobdell’s report.
    Regards
    Douglas M Forbes
    Greenfield IN 46140
    [email protected]
    [1] Behar et al, 2004, Contrasting patterns of Y chromosome variation in Ashkenazi Jewish and host non-Jewish European populations.
    [2] Shen et al, 2004, Reconstruction of Patrilineages and Matrilineages of Samaritans and Other Israeli Populations From Y-Chromosome and Mitochondrial DNA Sequence Variation.
    [3] Hammer et al, 1999, Jewish and Middle Eastern non-Jewish populations share a common pool of Y-chromosome biallelic haplotypes.
    [4] Zegura et al, 2004, High-Resolution SNPs and Microsatellite Haplotypes Point to a Single, Recent Entry of Native American Y Chromosomes into the Americas

  • Doug Forbes

    A report in the L A Times by William Lobdell (February 6, 2006) asserted that some Mormons were troubled by a “lack of discernible Hebrew blood in Native Americans”. In fact about one third of Native American males selected for DNA research belong to Y chromosome lineage groups commonly found in modern Jews. This includes the Q-P36 lineage group that is ancestral to the primary Native American lineage group Q3. Q-P36 is found in 5% of Ashkenazi Jews [1], 5% of Iraqi Jews [2] and a significant number of Iranian Jews [3]. Other west Eurasian lineages found in Native American test subjects include R, E3b, J, F, G, and I [4]. All of these are also found in modern Jews. The trouble isn’t a “lack of discernible Hebrew blood in Native Americans”, but a lack of discernible facts in Lobdell’s report.
    Regards
    Douglas M Forbes
    Greenfield IN 46140
    [email protected]
    [1] Behar et al, 2004, Contrasting patterns of Y chromosome variation in Ashkenazi Jewish and host non-Jewish European populations.
    [2] Shen et al, 2004, Reconstruction of Patrilineages and Matrilineages of Samaritans and Other Israeli Populations From Y-Chromosome and Mitochondrial DNA Sequence Variation.
    [3] Hammer et al, 1999, Jewish and Middle Eastern non-Jewish populations share a common pool of Y-chromosome biallelic haplotypes.
    [4] Zegura et al, 2004, High-Resolution SNPs and Microsatellite Haplotypes Point to a Single, Recent Entry of Native American Y Chromosomes into the Americas

  • Perhaps, but the same point is also used for South Eastern Asians, and Latin Americans. So you’re telling me that one single lost tribe, crossed the Atlantic, settled and settled more than half the world? With one single tribe? Yeah, right.
    The point is: DNA shows that Native Americans didn’t come from Jerusalem. You only need one person to not have the gene, to disprove the whole thing, since the Book of Mormon claims that those with dark skin are the successors of the neophytes.
    You proved that perhaps there’s a chance that the lost tribe did end up in the New World. But that doesn’t prove the other way around, that all those in the New World were the descendents of the tribe.
    This is plain logic:
    If A and B, then C != If B and C = A.

  • darkmoon

    Perhaps, but the same point is also used for South Eastern Asians, and Latin Americans. So you’re telling me that one single lost tribe, crossed the Atlantic, settled and settled more than half the world? With one single tribe? Yeah, right.
    The point is: DNA shows that Native Americans didn’t come from Jerusalem. You only need one person to not have the gene, to disprove the whole thing, since the Book of Mormon claims that those with dark skin are the successors of the neophytes.
    You proved that perhaps there’s a chance that the lost tribe did end up in the New World. But that doesn’t prove the other way around, that all those in the New World were the descendents of the tribe.
    This is plain logic:
    If A and B, then C != If B and C = A.

  • Doug Forbes

    According to research by Hammer et al in 2005 [1] self identified Native Americans in the US break down by paternal lineage as follows. About 31% are Q-P36; which is also found in Jews and other groups. About 27% are Q-M3, which is a branch of Q-P36 that is virtually unique to Native Americans. About 24% are in the R lineage group, which predominates in Europe. Only about 9% have East Asian lineages: C-P39 and N-Tat. About 1% have African lineage, E3a. The remaining 8% belong to European-Middle Eastern lineages: I, J, E3b, G & F. Some of this is the result of post-Columbian admixture. However, it is impossible to know from the DNA alone, when a strain of any given lineage entered the Native American gene pool. The fact that both Jews and Native Americans share the Q-P36 lineage may not prove the Book of Mormon to be true, but it shatters the claim that DNA evidence refutes it.
    [1] Hammer et al, 2005, Population structure of Y chromosome SNP haplogroups in the United States and forensic implications for constructing Y chromosome STR databases

  • Doug Forbes

    According to research by Hammer et al in 2005 [1] self identified Native Americans in the US break down by paternal lineage as follows. About 31% are Q-P36; which is also found in Jews and other groups. About 27% are Q-M3, which is a branch of Q-P36 that is virtually unique to Native Americans. About 24% are in the R lineage group, which predominates in Europe. Only about 9% have East Asian lineages: C-P39 and N-Tat. About 1% have African lineage, E3a. The remaining 8% belong to European-Middle Eastern lineages: I, J, E3b, G & F. Some of this is the result of post-Columbian admixture. However, it is impossible to know from the DNA alone, when a strain of any given lineage entered the Native American gene pool. The fact that both Jews and Native Americans share the Q-P36 lineage may not prove the Book of Mormon to be true, but it shatters the claim that DNA evidence refutes it.
    [1] Hammer et al, 2005, Population structure of Y chromosome SNP haplogroups in the United States and forensic implications for constructing Y chromosome STR databases

  • Heh. From what I’m reading, you’ve obviously never taken genetics. Genetic drift of markers can actually be traced and tracked on their entrance into any given society with a large enough sample. Probably good for you to read this. Your little speech actually was hypocritcal. The only thing that the genetics had to prove was the Book of Mormon to not be true. Disproving something is a lot easier than proving anything, in typical scientific method. That was done by finding Native Americans without the Q-P36 lineage. Thus, there was no “shattering” of DNA evidence as you claim.

  • darkmoon

    Heh. From what I’m reading, you’ve obviously never taken genetics. Genetic drift of markers can actually be traced and tracked on their entrance into any given society with a large enough sample. Probably good for you to read this. Your little speech actually was hypocritcal. The only thing that the genetics had to prove was the Book of Mormon to not be true. Disproving something is a lot easier than proving anything, in typical scientific method. That was done by finding Native Americans without the Q-P36 lineage. Thus, there was no “shattering” of DNA evidence as you claim.

  • Doug Forbes

    Darkmoon
    I have cited the published research in my previous posts. All you have to do is copy the name of the study from one of the footnotes, paste it into a Google search field and hit return. What is the problem?
    All researchers in each study are listed on the first page along with their credentials. Q-P36 is a Y-chromosome lineage shared by Jews and Native Americans. This is established fact.

  • Doug Forbes

    Darkmoon
    I have cited the published research in my previous posts. All you have to do is copy the name of the study from one of the footnotes, paste it into a Google search field and hit return. What is the problem?
    All researchers in each study are listed on the first page along with their credentials. Q-P36 is a Y-chromosome lineage shared by Jews and Native Americans. This is established fact.

  • Doug Forbes

    OK Darkmoon,
    Let me see if I understand what you’re saying. You claim that the Book of Mormon is disproved because some American Indians do not have the Q-P36 lineage. Am I reading you right there? If not, please clarify. If that is what you meant to say, then by the same logic, the Asian origin theory is disproved by the fact that 91% of Native American males do not have an East Asian Y-chromosome.

  • Doug Forbes

    OK Darkmoon,
    Let me see if I understand what you’re saying. You claim that the Book of Mormon is disproved because some American Indians do not have the Q-P36 lineage. Am I reading you right there? If not, please clarify. If that is what you meant to say, then by the same logic, the Asian origin theory is disproved by the fact that 91% of Native American males do not have an East Asian Y-chromosome.

  • Uhh… no. Because of two things. 1) Book of Mormon claims that ALL native Americans stem from that lost tribe. Thereby, you only need “1” person without the gene to disprove that. Thus, if you are a Native American, and as a Mormon missionary you claim that they are from the lost tribe, and they are not, then they automatically get stuck in limbo because they can never become a nephite.
    It’s a simple logic issue. You never claim all or never, but it does. Either that, or Mormon missionaries are gathering followers under false pretense. Either way, your “facts” don’t prove anything if the Book of Mormon is literally translated as the article said. The only thing you have to say is that you don’t read the Book of Mormon literally to disprove ALL of the above, but I still haven’t heard anything yet so I assume that it’s literal as pointed out by the LA Times.

  • darkmoon

    Uhh… no. Because of two things. 1) Book of Mormon claims that ALL native Americans stem from that lost tribe. Thereby, you only need “1” person without the gene to disprove that. Thus, if you are a Native American, and as a Mormon missionary you claim that they are from the lost tribe, and they are not, then they automatically get stuck in limbo because they can never become a nephite.
    It’s a simple logic issue. You never claim all or never, but it does. Either that, or Mormon missionaries are gathering followers under false pretense. Either way, your “facts” don’t prove anything if the Book of Mormon is literally translated as the article said. The only thing you have to say is that you don’t read the Book of Mormon literally to disprove ALL of the above, but I still haven’t heard anything yet so I assume that it’s literal as pointed out by the LA Times.

  • DougForbes

    OK, Now I get it.
    First let me say that it is refreshing to find someone actually willing to accept the facts about Q-P36. Many simply go into denial.
    That said, you have turned this discussion into one about what the Book of Mormon (BoM) says rather than DNA. That’s fine, but you may want to brush up on your BoM. I believe your statements will be hard to back up.
    Finally, regardless of what the BoM says or doesn’t say about how many American Indians are descended from Israelites, William Lobdell and the LA Times are wrong on the facts, because Lobdell claimed there was a total lack of “discernable Hebrew blood” in Native Americans. No amount of semantic squirming can now make that statement appear both informed and honest.

  • DougForbes

    OK, Now I get it.
    First let me say that it is refreshing to find someone actually willing to accept the facts about Q-P36. Many simply go into denial.
    That said, you have turned this discussion into one about what the Book of Mormon (BoM) says rather than DNA. That’s fine, but you may want to brush up on your BoM. I believe your statements will be hard to back up.
    Finally, regardless of what the BoM says or doesn’t say about how many American Indians are descended from Israelites, William Lobdell and the LA Times are wrong on the facts, because Lobdell claimed there was a total lack of “discernable Hebrew blood” in Native Americans. No amount of semantic squirming can now make that statement appear both informed and honest.

  • MAL

    STOP TRYING TO WHITEWASH THE NATIVE AMERICANS. THEY CAME FROM ASIA, JUST LOOK AT THEIR FEATURES. YES, SOME NATIVE AMERICANS ARE MIXED, LIKE MOST OF US IN THE WORLD. SO JUST BECAUSE YOU MAY FIND SOME EUROPEAN HERITAGE DOESN’T MEAN ANYTHING.

  • MAL

    STOP TRYING TO WHITEWASH THE NATIVE AMERICANS. THEY CAME FROM ASIA, JUST LOOK AT THEIR FEATURES. YES, SOME NATIVE AMERICANS ARE MIXED, LIKE MOST OF US IN THE WORLD. SO JUST BECAUSE YOU MAY FIND SOME EUROPEAN HERITAGE DOESN’T MEAN ANYTHING.

  • Doug Forbes

    2006 Genetic Research
    Back in 1996 Peter Underhill, a PhD from Stanford University calculated that the most recent common ancestor of most American Indians lived 2147 year ago. He used a mutation rate of 2.1 per 1000; a rate observed in living populations. Since then, he has been trying to explain this by developing an ‘effective’ mutation rate. [1]
    The theory is that even though we see mutations occurring at rates of 2.1 per 1000 (Weber & Wong) and even 2.8 per 1000 (Kayser) in living populations, mutations don’t accumulate that fast over thousands of years. Underhill’s first attempt to do this focused on Maoris and Gypsies. He and his colleague, Zhivotovsky, came up with an ‘effective’ Y-chromosome mutation rate of about 0.7 per 1000. This was used in subsequent studies including one on Native Americans led by Zegura in 2004. [2]
    Zegura calculated that a common male ancestor of Native Americans in the Q-M3 lineage lived between 10,000 and 17,000 years ago using the ‘effective’ mutation rate. Zegura also calculated that the Q-P36 lineage entered America between 10,000 and 17,000 ago. In 2006 Underhill and Zhivotovsky, did more work and found that lineage extinction could explain why their ‘effective’ mutation rate was slower than observed rates by a factor of 3 or 4. [3]
    Also in 2006 another research team used the faster Y-chromosome mutation rate observed by Kayser of 2.8 per 1000 to calculate the date of migration of Yakuts. Here is an excerpt from that study. “… it has recently been proposed that ‘effective’ mutation rates (Zhivotovsky et al. 2004), which are not based on pedigree studies but on archaeologically calibrated migrations, may reflect the true historical processes better than pedigree rates. Using the average ‘effective’ rate of [0.69 per 1000] calculated by Zhivotovsky et al. (2004) results in a much greater age of the Yakut male expansion of approximately 3800 years … However, these older dates are inconsistent with linguistic and archaeological evidence: … the split of Yakut from Common Turkic cannot be earlier than 1,500 years BP.” (Pakendorf et al. 2006) [4]
    So we have a study where Kayser’s mutation rate (2.8 per 1000) works and the ‘effective’ rate does not. This strongly suggests, at the very least, that the ‘effective’ rate of Underhill and Zhivotovsky is not universally valid. If we apply Kayser’s rate to Zegura’s work, we get a lower bound of 2,500 years ago for the most recent common ancestor of most Native Americans. This is similar to Underhill’s result back in 1996 which was 2147 and clearly within Book of Mormon (BoM) times. The beauty of all this from the Mormon standpoint is that we can use both sides of the mutation rate problem.
    If the ‘effective’ mutation rate is not valid, then the Lamanites are descendants of a man who could have lived in BoM times. Since the Q-P36 lineage is also found in modern Jews, Lehi could be the founder of that line in America. One the other hand, if the ‘effective’ rate is valid, it is probably because many male lineages frequently go extinct. This could explain the scarcity of more common Jewish lineages like J or E3b.
    [1] Underhill et al, 1996, A pre-Columbian Y chromosome-specific transition and its implications for human evolutionary history , Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 93, 196-200.
    [2] Zegura et al, 2004, High-Resolution SNPs and Microsatellite Haplotypes Point to a Single, Recent Entry of Native American Y Chromosomes into the Americas.
    [3] Zhivotovsky LA, Underhill PA, Feldman MW 2006 “Difference between evolutionarily effective and germ line mutation rate due to stochastically varying haplogroup size” | Molecular Biology and Evolution
    [4] Brigitte Pakendorf et al. 2006 “Investigating the effects of prehistoric migrations in Siberia : genetic variation and the origins of Yakuts” | Hum Genet (2006) 120:334–353

  • Doug Forbes

    2006 Genetic Research
    Back in 1996 Peter Underhill, a PhD from Stanford University calculated that the most recent common ancestor of most American Indians lived 2147 year ago. He used a mutation rate of 2.1 per 1000; a rate observed in living populations. Since then, he has been trying to explain this by developing an ‘effective’ mutation rate. [1]
    The theory is that even though we see mutations occurring at rates of 2.1 per 1000 (Weber & Wong) and even 2.8 per 1000 (Kayser) in living populations, mutations don’t accumulate that fast over thousands of years. Underhill’s first attempt to do this focused on Maoris and Gypsies. He and his colleague, Zhivotovsky, came up with an ‘effective’ Y-chromosome mutation rate of about 0.7 per 1000. This was used in subsequent studies including one on Native Americans led by Zegura in 2004. [2]
    Zegura calculated that a common male ancestor of Native Americans in the Q-M3 lineage lived between 10,000 and 17,000 years ago using the ‘effective’ mutation rate. Zegura also calculated that the Q-P36 lineage entered America between 10,000 and 17,000 ago. In 2006 Underhill and Zhivotovsky, did more work and found that lineage extinction could explain why their ‘effective’ mutation rate was slower than observed rates by a factor of 3 or 4. [3]
    Also in 2006 another research team used the faster Y-chromosome mutation rate observed by Kayser of 2.8 per 1000 to calculate the date of migration of Yakuts. Here is an excerpt from that study. “… it has recently been proposed that ‘effective’ mutation rates (Zhivotovsky et al. 2004), which are not based on pedigree studies but on archaeologically calibrated migrations, may reflect the true historical processes better than pedigree rates. Using the average ‘effective’ rate of [0.69 per 1000] calculated by Zhivotovsky et al. (2004) results in a much greater age of the Yakut male expansion of approximately 3800 years … However, these older dates are inconsistent with linguistic and archaeological evidence: … the split of Yakut from Common Turkic cannot be earlier than 1,500 years BP.” (Pakendorf et al. 2006) [4]
    So we have a study where Kayser’s mutation rate (2.8 per 1000) works and the ‘effective’ rate does not. This strongly suggests, at the very least, that the ‘effective’ rate of Underhill and Zhivotovsky is not universally valid. If we apply Kayser’s rate to Zegura’s work, we get a lower bound of 2,500 years ago for the most recent common ancestor of most Native Americans. This is similar to Underhill’s result back in 1996 which was 2147 and clearly within Book of Mormon (BoM) times. The beauty of all this from the Mormon standpoint is that we can use both sides of the mutation rate problem.
    If the ‘effective’ mutation rate is not valid, then the Lamanites are descendants of a man who could have lived in BoM times. Since the Q-P36 lineage is also found in modern Jews, Lehi could be the founder of that line in America. One the other hand, if the ‘effective’ rate is valid, it is probably because many male lineages frequently go extinct. This could explain the scarcity of more common Jewish lineages like J or E3b.
    [1] Underhill et al, 1996, A pre-Columbian Y chromosome-specific transition and its implications for human evolutionary history , Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 93, 196-200.
    [2] Zegura et al, 2004, High-Resolution SNPs and Microsatellite Haplotypes Point to a Single, Recent Entry of Native American Y Chromosomes into the Americas.
    [3] Zhivotovsky LA, Underhill PA, Feldman MW 2006 “Difference between evolutionarily effective and germ line mutation rate due to stochastically varying haplogroup size” | Molecular Biology and Evolution
    [4] Brigitte Pakendorf et al. 2006 “Investigating the effects of prehistoric migrations in Siberia : genetic variation and the origins of Yakuts” | Hum Genet (2006) 120:334–353

  • If this is the case, then explain why missionaries tell Southeast Asians that they come from the same lost tribe?
    Like I said before. BoM pushes the extremes.
    You’re also trying to prove your theory via effective mutation rates. That’s theoretical biology. That’s like me saying that the warp drive can exist due to the fact that physics can prove it. Or that teleportation exists. Oh wait.. that does. Just on a quantum level.
    While we’re at it, why don’t we predict the effective mutation rate that would change chimpanzees into humans? Being that we’re talking about DNA and all.

  • darkmoon

    If this is the case, then explain why missionaries tell Southeast Asians that they come from the same lost tribe?
    Like I said before. BoM pushes the extremes.
    You’re also trying to prove your theory via effective mutation rates. That’s theoretical biology. That’s like me saying that the warp drive can exist due to the fact that physics can prove it. Or that teleportation exists. Oh wait.. that does. Just on a quantum level.
    While we’re at it, why don’t we predict the effective mutation rate that would change chimpanzees into humans? Being that we’re talking about DNA and all.

  • Doug Forbes

    (1) “…why missionaries tell Southeast Asians that they come from the same lost tribe?”
    Sorry, but I can’t help here. I have never heard this before. Possibly, you mean Polynesians. At one time, it was theorized that Polynesia was peopled by migrants from the Americas. Just a theory though.
    (2) “You’re also trying to prove your theory via effective mutation rates…”
    Actually I prefer the observed rates, especially the 2.8 per 1000 rate from Kayser’s work. It is Underhill and Zhivotovsky that developed the ‘effective’ mutation rate. They did so to solve a problem in evolutionary studies; the apparent youth of a Native American Y-chromosome lineage group (Q-M3).
    The Problem
    Ancient MtDNA and archeological evidence indicate that Man has been in the Americans for 10,000 years or more. Furthermore, the maternal lineages show continuity. Ancient MtDNA has been found belonging to the A, B, C and D lineages as far back as 10,000. Ancient X lineage has been confirmed as far back as 1300 years. So why do we get dates of 2147 or 2500 years Before Present (BP) when observed mutation rates are applied to Y chromosomes?
    Possible Answers
    1. A Genetic Bottleneck – It is possible that about 2600 years ago, the population of the Americas underwent a drastic decline. All living Native Americans are descended from the relatively few survivors. This bottleneck could have been more severe for males than females for some reason; leaving multiple female survivors for every male survivor.
    2. Underhill & Zhivotovsky’s ‘effective’ Y-chromosome mutation rate – Male lineage extinction occurs on an ongoing basis even when the total population does not decline. So mutations accumulate at a rate slower than those observed in father/son pairs (Kayser) or pedigrees (Weber & Wong).
    3. Y-chromosome replacement – Colonists from the Old World arrived about 2600 years ago and produced a lot of children with native women and their descendants outnumber the descendents of the previous males. We know this did happen in 1492. Today there are at least 200 million people with pre-Columbian MtDNA. At least 75% of them have European Y-chromosomes that have only been in America for about 500 years.
    4. Both 1 and 3 occurred coincidentally – A drastic decline in population occurred about 2600 ago in the Americas and at the time that the population was at its lowest colonists arrived from the Old World. These colonists produced a lot of children with Native women and linked their lineage to that of Native Americans.
    Option 4. is te Book of Mormon scenario
    (3) “While we’re at it, why don’t we predict the effective mutation rate that would change chimpanzees into humans?”
    I am sure that such a mutation rate has been calculated. Google “MtDNA mutation rates chimpanzee”

  • Doug Forbes

    (1) “…why missionaries tell Southeast Asians that they come from the same lost tribe?”
    Sorry, but I can’t help here. I have never heard this before. Possibly, you mean Polynesians. At one time, it was theorized that Polynesia was peopled by migrants from the Americas. Just a theory though.
    (2) “You’re also trying to prove your theory via effective mutation rates…”
    Actually I prefer the observed rates, especially the 2.8 per 1000 rate from Kayser’s work. It is Underhill and Zhivotovsky that developed the ‘effective’ mutation rate. They did so to solve a problem in evolutionary studies; the apparent youth of a Native American Y-chromosome lineage group (Q-M3).
    The Problem
    Ancient MtDNA and archeological evidence indicate that Man has been in the Americans for 10,000 years or more. Furthermore, the maternal lineages show continuity. Ancient MtDNA has been found belonging to the A, B, C and D lineages as far back as 10,000. Ancient X lineage has been confirmed as far back as 1300 years. So why do we get dates of 2147 or 2500 years Before Present (BP) when observed mutation rates are applied to Y chromosomes?
    Possible Answers
    1. A Genetic Bottleneck – It is possible that about 2600 years ago, the population of the Americas underwent a drastic decline. All living Native Americans are descended from the relatively few survivors. This bottleneck could have been more severe for males than females for some reason; leaving multiple female survivors for every male survivor.
    2. Underhill & Zhivotovsky’s ‘effective’ Y-chromosome mutation rate – Male lineage extinction occurs on an ongoing basis even when the total population does not decline. So mutations accumulate at a rate slower than those observed in father/son pairs (Kayser) or pedigrees (Weber & Wong).
    3. Y-chromosome replacement – Colonists from the Old World arrived about 2600 years ago and produced a lot of children with native women and their descendants outnumber the descendents of the previous males. We know this did happen in 1492. Today there are at least 200 million people with pre-Columbian MtDNA. At least 75% of them have European Y-chromosomes that have only been in America for about 500 years.
    4. Both 1 and 3 occurred coincidentally – A drastic decline in population occurred about 2600 ago in the Americas and at the time that the population was at its lowest colonists arrived from the Old World. These colonists produced a lot of children with Native women and linked their lineage to that of Native Americans.
    Option 4. is te Book of Mormon scenario
    (3) “While we’re at it, why don’t we predict the effective mutation rate that would change chimpanzees into humans?”
    I am sure that such a mutation rate has been calculated. Google “MtDNA mutation rates chimpanzee”