High-density SNP genotyping detects homogeneity of Spanish and French Basques, and confirms their genomic distinctiveness from other European populations
A recent study reported that Basques do not constitute a genetically distinct population, and that Basques from Spanish and French provinces do not show significant genetic similarity. These conclusions disagree with numerous previous studies, and are not consistent with the historical and linguistic evidence that supports the distinctiveness of Basques. In order to further investigate this controversy, we have genotyped 83 Spanish Basque individuals and used these data to infer population structure based on more than 60,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms of several European populations. Here, we present the first high-throughput analysis including Basques from Spanish and French provinces, and show that all Basques constitute a homogeneous group that can be clearly differentiated from other European populations.