Close menu


Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

Is urbanization scrambling the genetic structure of human populations? A case study

Ashrafian Bonab, Maziar, Lawson Handley, L J and Balloux, F (2007) Is urbanization scrambling the genetic structure of human populations? A case study. Heredity, 98 (3). pp. 151-156. ISSN 0018-067X

Item Type: Article


Recent population expansion and increased migration linked to urbanization are assumed to be eroding the genetic structure of human populations. We investigated change in population structure over three generations by analysing both demographic and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) data from a random sample of 2351 men from 22 Iranian populations. Potential changes in genetic diversity (θ) and genetic distance (FST) over the last three generations were analysed by assigning mtDNA sequences to populations based on the individual's place of birth or that of their mother or grandmother. Despite the fact that several areas included cities of over one million inhabitants, we detected no change in genetic diversity, and only a small decrease in population structure, except in the capital city (Tehran), which was characterized by massive immigration, increased θ and a large decrease in FST over time. Our results suggest that recent erosion of human population structure might not be as important as previously thought, except in some large conurbations, and this clearly has important implications for future sampling strategies. © 2007 Nature Publishing Group All rights reserved.

Full text not available from this repository.

More Information

Depositing User: Leah Maughan


Item ID: 12946
Identification Number:
ISSN: 0018-067X
Official URL:

Users with ORCIDS

ORCID for Maziar Ashrafian Bonab: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2021 16:23
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2021 16:23


Author: Maziar Ashrafian Bonab ORCID iD
Author: L J Lawson Handley
Author: F Balloux

University Divisions

Faculty of Health Sciences and Wellbeing > School of Nursing and Health Sciences

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item