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New study on genetic origins of dogs

BCSnob
Explorer
Explorer
When you’re bored with other things during this COVID isolation here is a recently published genetic study of dogs and man looking at how both spread throughout the world together (sometimes not together).

Origins and genetic legacy of prehistoric dogs

Here is a commentary on this study and the current state of knowledge on this topic.

Of dogs and men

A few interesting takeaways are:

Of dogs and men wrote:
Dogs likely evolved from a wolf population that self-domesticated, scavenging for leftovers from Paleolithic hunter-gatherers in Eurasia (2, 3). However, the exact timing and geographic location where the dog lineage started remain unknown, owing to the scarcity of Paleolithic dogs in the archaeological record. Analyses of genetic data suggest that dog-wolf divergence took place ?25,000 to 40,000 years ago (4, 5), providing an earliest possible date for dog domestication.


Dogs genetically split from wolves after which there was limited genetic intermixing; when intermixing occurred it was mostly dogs adding to the wolf genome. The authors proposed that adding wolf genes to the dog genome resulted in wolf-dogs with less than desired traits for living and working with humans.

Of dogs and men wrote:
genetic relations between human populations largely match the genetic relations between proximal dog populations in Eurasia and the Americas, suggesting that movement patterns are correlated between dog and human. For instance, about half of the ancestry of European dogs originates from Paleolithic West Eurasia, and the other half from Southwest Asia; similarly, modern-day Europeans are a mixture between pre-Neolithic hunter-gatherers and Neolithic farmers from Anatolia.


Also dogs and men developed genetic changes correlated with changes in diet.

Of dogs and men wrote:
In addition to sharing dispersal paths, dogs and humans have traced parallel paths of evolutionary adaptation. Variation in the copy number of genes encoding amylase, the enzyme required for breaking down starch, is such an example of convergent evolution. Humans carry extra salivary amylase copies compared to chimpanzees (8, 9), owing to high starch consumption that perhaps began before farming (10). Likewise, most dogs, compared to wolves, carry extra pancreatic amylase (AMYB2) copies, possibly facilitating starch digestion in their new environment (11). Bergström and colleagues show that early dogs already carried extra amylase copies compared to wolves, but amylase copy numbers further expanded following the increasing reliance on starch-rich agricultural diets in prehistoric Eurasia over the past 7000 years. Similarly, a recent study on Arctic sled dogs reported genetic signatures of adaptation in their fatty acid metabolism genes (12), analogous to their Inuit masters who carry adaptive changes in the same metabolic pathways—a likely response to the high-fat Arctic diet (13).


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Mark & Renee
Working Border Collies: Nell (retired), Tally (retired), Grant (semi retired), Lee, Fern & Hattie
Duke & Penny (Anatolians) home guarding the flock
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2007 Nash 22M
19 REPLIES 19

toedtoes
Explorer III
Explorer III
colliehauler wrote:
toedtoes wrote:
I don't think that is correct. Right now, the breeds most commonly identified as being the most closely related genetically to wolves are (not in order):

Huskies
Malamutes
Chow Chows
Akitas
Shiba Inus
Shih Tzus
Llhasa Apsos
Pekinese
Samoyed
Saluki
Tibetan Terrier
Basenji
Afghan Hound
Shar Pei
Just recalling a chart the International Wolf Center in Ely had on the wall.


They could have been identifying the breeds that LOOK the most like wolves. Huskies, malamutes, shepherds and collies would all be up there on that list.

Personally, I'm glad collies aren't on this list. Tornado-dog is already a beast with the "closest to wolves" shuh tzu and pekinese and his JRT attitude. The collie dna is his only saving grace... 😉
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1998 American Clipper Fold n Roll Folding Trailer
Both born in Morgan Hill, CA to Irv Perch (Daddy of the Aristocrat trailers)

colliehauler
Explorer II
Explorer II
toedtoes wrote:
I don't think that is correct. Right now, the breeds most commonly identified as being the most closely related genetically to wolves are (not in order):

Huskies
Malamutes
Chow Chows
Akitas
Shiba Inus
Shih Tzus
Llhasa Apsos
Pekinese
Samoyed
Saluki
Tibetan Terrier
Basenji
Afghan Hound
Shar Pei
Just recalling a chart the International Wolf Center in Ely had on the wall.

colliehauler
Explorer II
Explorer II
ppine wrote:
Experiments with the breeding of foxes has shown that wild animals can be more or less domesticated in a few generations. By selecting for the calmest animals, the least afraid of humans they can be pet quality animals in about 7 generations.

The wide variety and number of dog breeds, is a testament to the power of breeding. Line breeding on purpose is fine. Spay and neuter pets unless you plan to improve the breeding of your pet's line. In-breeding is a slippery slope that brings out recessive genes, but al;so brings along with it things like deafness, blindness and bad hips and eyes.
I remember seeing that. Was it in Russia? They selected the calmest pairs to breed and they also did a experiment with the most aggressive pairs as well.

At Silver Rapids a local Grey Wolf would stop by for his dog biscuit of a evening. Last year I had a Black bear and her 2 cubs down the road from my trailer, got the boat air horn out and they took off for the woods.

BCSnob
Explorer
Explorer
Line breeding = in breeding
Mark & Renee
Working Border Collies: Nell (retired), Tally (retired), Grant (semi retired), Lee, Fern & Hattie
Duke & Penny (Anatolians) home guarding the flock
2001 Chevy Express 2500 Cargo (rolling kennel)
2007 Nash 22M

ppine
Explorer II
Explorer II
Experiments with the breeding of foxes has shown that wild animals can be more or less domesticated in a few generations. By selecting for the calmest animals, the least afraid of humans they can be pet quality animals in about 7 generations.

The wide variety and number of dog breeds, is a testament to the power of breeding. Line breeding on purpose is fine. Spay and neuter pets unless you plan to improve the breeding of your pet's line. In-breeding is a slippery slope that brings out recessive genes, but al;so brings along with it things like deafness, blindness and bad hips and eyes.

toedtoes
Explorer III
Explorer III
I don't think that is correct. Right now, the breeds most commonly identified as being the most closely related genetically to wolves are (not in order):

Huskies
Malamutes
Chow Chows
Akitas
Shiba Inus
Shih Tzus
Llhasa Apsos
Pekinese
Samoyed
Saluki
Tibetan Terrier
Basenji
Afghan Hound
Shar Pei
1975 American Clipper RV with Dodge 360 (photo in profile)
1998 American Clipper Fold n Roll Folding Trailer
Both born in Morgan Hill, CA to Irv Perch (Daddy of the Aristocrat trailers)

colliehauler
Explorer II
Explorer II
When at the International Wolf center they had a chart showing how current dog breeds were descended from wolves. I was surprised that Collies were only three places down on the chart from wolves.

Alison9
Explorer
Explorer
Dogs are such familiar parts of our lives. They are almost in every house. I agree that dogs are not direct descendants of current wolves.
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toedtoes
Explorer III
Explorer III
I think the fact that dogs are not direct descendants of current wolves, but rather both dogs and current wolves are descendants from a common ancestor is important. So much of what we have based our knowledge of dogs from is how current wolves behave. But that is not all that effective because current wolves and dogs have evolved on simultaneous but parallel tracks.

From what I've read, all dogs and most wolves, as well as dingos and New Guinea singing dogs are of the species Canis Lupus. They have different subspecies - all dogs being Canis Lupus Familiaris.
1975 American Clipper RV with Dodge 360 (photo in profile)
1998 American Clipper Fold n Roll Folding Trailer
Both born in Morgan Hill, CA to Irv Perch (Daddy of the Aristocrat trailers)

henrymosley
Explorer
Explorer
BCSnob wrote:
When you’re bored with other things during this COVID isolation here is a recently published genetic study of dogs and man looking at how both spread throughout the world together (sometimes not together).

***Link Removed***

Here is a commentary on this study and the current state of knowledge on this topic.

Of dogs and ***Link Removed***

A few interesting takeaways are:

Dogs likely evolved from a wolf population that self-domesticated, scavenging for leftovers from Paleolithic hunter-gatherers in Eurasia (2, 3). However, the exact timing and geographic location where the dog lineage started remain unknown, owing to the scarcity of Paleolithic dogs in the archaeological record. Analyses of genetic data suggest that dog-wolf divergence took place? 25,000 to 40,000 years ago (4, 5), providing the earliest possible date for dog domestication.


Amazingly, a human could domesticate such strong animals, which speaks volumes about their power and place in the food chain, but if you break it down in years, 40,000 is not that much, the obvious signs of civilization have made wolves an issue of survival, for such formidable animals were an obstacle for humans, who could wipe out their population altogether. If we look at the modern world, how many wolves are there in the world today? 60-70 thousand. And what is the population of dogs? 525 million. These numbers speak for themselves. A wolf is either a friend or prey.
Interesting facts in a bazoocam videos for the best know-it-alls

patbell
Explorer
Explorer
Very interesting information.

Deb_and_Ed_M
Explorer
Explorer
dturm wrote:


Very interesting. This means that dogs actually can utilize those EVIL grains and have been for eons?? (Read sarcasm for those of you who don't know my posting history :B)

Thanks for sharing.


Oh - I caught the sarcasm....LOL! I was surprised by the long-time ability to eat grains - and yet the animals that are the most "successful" seem to be able to eat a large variety of foods when their preferred food isn't available.
Ed, Deb, and 2 dogs
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dturm
Moderator
Moderator
I think breeds of dogs are a better way to think of it. They are all the same species, same number of chromosomes and very similar in many aspects.
Doug & Sandy
Kaylee
Winnie 6 1/2 year old golden
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noteven
Explorer III
Explorer III
Are there different "races" of dogs? Or is a dog a dog, DNA wise?