Demand for larger Y-STR reference databases in ethnic melting-pot countries: Argentina as a test case

  • Mariela CaputoEmail author
  • A. Sala
  • D. Corach
Original Article


The Y chromosome behaves as a single locus. Its genetic information is useful in forensic casework, deficiency kinship testing, and population genetics studies. Continuous increases of loci number within commercial kits forced modification of worldwide reference databases. In Pan American countries, like Argentina, diverse parental ethnic groups contributed to the extant admixed urban populations. We report 509 additional haplotypes of 23 Y-STRs from donors inhabiting urban areas of six Argentinean provinces: Buenos Aires, Santiago del Estero, Santa Cruz, Rio Negro, Santa Fe, and Formosa. To better understand the demographic landscape of the admixed urban paternal lineages, structural analysis was performed using published data from other Argentinean provinces. AMOVA by Rst distance and inferred haplogroups by two predictive online software methods based on haplotypes yielded complementary results with respect to detected population structure, probably due to the different proportions of the Native American Q3-M3 haplogroup in the studied samples. This situation, which is common to most North, Meso, and South American countries, underscores the need for the additional step of typing specific SNPs for haplogroup diagnosis. We propose organizing Y-STR haplotype reference databases according to the most frequent haplogroups detected in a given admixed population.


Y-STR reference database PPY-23 Admixed urban populations Immigration countries Native American Q3-M3 haplogroup Argentina 



Daniel Corach, Andrea Sala, and Mariela Caputo are members of Carrera del Investigador Cientifico CONICET (National Scientific and Technical Research Council).

Author contributions

Study design: D.C. and M.C.; experimental work: M.C. and A.S.; statistical analysis: M.C. and D.C. The initial manuscript was written by M.C.; revisions: D.C. and A.S. All authors reviewed the manuscript.

Funding information

This work was supported, in part, by grants PIP 0914 (CONICET) and 20020130100783BA (UBACyT) to Daniel Corach. The funding agencies had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Donors accepted the terms and assigned a written informed consent statement, which was approved together with the corresponding research project by the Ethics Committee of the School of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Buenos Aires (Exp. 744085/2012).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

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Copyright information

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Facultad de Farmacia y Bioquímica, Departamento de Microbiología, Inmunología y Biotecnología, Cátedra de Genética Forense y Servicio de Huellas Digitales GenéticasUniversidad de Buenos AiresBuenos AiresArgentina
  2. 2.CONICET – Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y TecnológicasBuenos AiresArgentina

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